Beyond the Cusp

February 11, 2016

Obama’s Massive Budget Proposes but Misses All Marks

 

The Congress will be debating a budget which manages to miss a number of vital areas while spending massive amounts on failed programs and is designed to expand dependence on government programs, expanding programs designed to replace the need for employment forming a self-enforced permanent reliance. Many of the new permanently unemployed who have completely resigned to their current fate and have adapted to a lifestyle more conducive to a retired person complete with a number of friends in the same lifestyle and probably virtual on-line friends in a game or chat room who meet every day for their entertainment used to fill the day while some take on a lifestyle of a self-imposed solitary confinement with hopefully a friend or relative who makes occasional contact allowing for at least a minimal level of human interaction. These are people who have fallen through the cracks finding government programs for their support and sustenance. They know where to get food and live either with their parents or other relative or with a group of man living in a rented apartment or in Section 8 Housing. These are people who have accepted that they have failed and have little if any motivation to improve their lot in life. There will be funds for these people and if they vote we can guess which party is their choice as their existence depends on government teat to nurture them. If only our military personnel were so well cared for, but one has to have their priorities after all.

 

This budget will needfully be augmented by whoever wins the Presidential contest next fall, and that cannot come fast enough. This makes this budget President Obama’s final shot at remaking the United States into nothing more than another demilitarized socialist European failing state. Other than the first budget he proposed and got passed by a Democrat Congress which had complete control over both houses, Congress also passed his next spending increase in a supplemental budget in some way with almost every piece of legislation adding to the demand for more revenue from a tax strapped and wounded economy which groaned and struggled under the ever increasing burden. It seemed the only places cash strapped under the Obama years was national defense and the space program. To be fair the space program appears to be the whipping boy of every politician whose aim it is to reel in a runaway budget. Have you ever noticed that the NASA budget, when it comes time to make cuts, is always given in billions of dollars and never like other parts which are mentioned in percentages of spending? There is a reason which becomes crystal clear once you understand the actual size of the NASA budget. The dirty little secret is that the NASA budget has seldom reached beyond 2 1/2 % and ever since the end of the moon race has never cleared 1 1/2 % and usually hovered around ¾ of 1% of the budget, that is 0.75% which is almost nonexistent but when said in billions of dollars it sound enormous, or ginormous as a very young child once exclaimed while watching television. So, on we go to other budget realities.

 

The defense budget, it’s a monstrous piece of the budget, right? Wrong. Actually the peace time military usually runs on under 9% of the budget. The one wasteful part of the budget is the now approaching 25% of the budget which is used to pay the interest on the national debt, the interest which means the actual debt never gets paid down. This is even worse than paying your monthly minimum on your charge cards as even those include payment beyond just “servicing” your debt. We all understand that should we not charge more on our cards that this minimum payment will eventually drop to zero as we will have paid off our debt in full. Not the Federal Government, they pay what we would call a default payment where they pay off the interest and allow the actual principle to remain untouched thus they could pay the interest rate forever and never have the debt grow any smaller. I hear you and you are correct, that is no way to run a budget. Still this paying off only the interest will force deficit spending as there would be no other manner of paying off the debt. So, that payment may have grown since the last time we came across the actual numbers on that debt demand. Another 30% goes to all the benefits and Social Security based payments and another 30% on corporate welfare and the remainder which is, let’s do the math, NASA and the Defense budgets equals 10% plus debt service is 25% and support payments combined is 60% and we are at 95% and not even begun to talk about simply running the government we would be wise to end our outlays and use that remaining 5% to cover any unexpended necessities which may come around, but no, that amount is eaten up largely by the operating payment which easily found uses for any remaining cash as long as it is not used to pay off principle of the debt as that would make sense.

 

With the budget covering all the massive increases, as it has since his first Obama budget gave unfathomable increases that set the tone for the remainder of budgets, government spending is, as logic would dictate, out of control. This was an intentional ploy as now the cost of living increases themselves was sufficiently large that many agencies have been strapped for ways to spend their new levels of funding; but still each was then sufficiently charged with new outlays that their percentage of the budget increased well beyond that 5% limitation. That paltry 5% was insignificant when compared to the demands that legislation would place on the government such as added programs and the expansion of programs such that they were tasked with making payments sometimes to larger and larger sectors of society. One easily provided example was the lengthening of the time one could collect unemployment before being dropped from the roles. The same was occurring at the welfare offices as more people found themselves eligible for added benefits and the increase in people found to be disabled, all of these categories add up and very soon one is talking about real outlays running smack against deficit spending and an increased debt. The worrisome item is how much additional outlays will be required for the military to continue to operate at a level well in advance of other nations who, such as China and Russia, are attempting to supplant the United States as the hegemon. Russia is doing exactly that in the Middle East and Eastern Europe while China is targeting the Western Pacific Ocean and Asia.

 

The two main problems facing the United States will require the next President to address two areas and decide exactly what they intend to do to mitigate the problems. The first and potentially lesser of the problems is simply supporting the military and restoring it with additional funding to cover the development and training of the soldiers on new and more advanced equipment. The F-22 Raptor should be put back into production and the full rostrum originally intended should be resumed. There are a number of other areas where upgrades or replacement is necessary or approaching at an unanticipated rate. One such item is space defense which would protect vital satellites from attack, especially ground based attacks. The other would be an overhaul of the weapons utilized by the military. Improved individual weapon systems and squad defense systems need upgrading or replacement. A new infantry weapon is desperately needed and the new weapon will need to be sufficient to fire a round which will penetrate the personal armor currently used by other militaries and many terrorist groups who have been able to acquire such defensive systems. Another replacement, actually supplemented, is the ability to project force overseas from within the United States to any point on the map within four hours. There has been a plan for a space plane which involves a low earth orbit to be attained and then a controlled reentry would place a squad of soldiers anywhere required. A coordinated launch of sufficient numbers of the crafts could relocate entire companies and even brigades and have them operational within three hours, comfortably within the requirements. New armor, specifically heavy and moderate tanks and the design of an armored personnel carrier (APC) which is mine resistant and adaptable enough to perform transport of any company or brigade troop safely and with relative comfort and a seating capacity for thirty-five men and their equipment. ROV and self-sufficient robotic systems should be urgently placed at the front of DARPA priorities thus leading to fast track readiness for these systems which are required for multiple tasks.

 

 

Super Soldier Outfitted with Helmets, Reactive Body Armor, Unit Identification, Full Battle Field Interface, Text to Unit and Individual, Drone Interface, Full Level Integration from Unit to Command, Exo-Skeleton Strength Assist, Enemy Positions Known and Suspected, Unit and Command View What Soldier Sees

Super Soldier Outfitted with Helmets, Reactive Body Armor, Unit Identification,
Full Battle Field Interface, Text to Unit and Individual, Drone Interface,
Full Level Integration from Unit to Command, Exo-Skeleton Strength Assist,
Enemy Positions Known and Suspected, Unit and Command View What Soldier Sees

 

 

Above the rebuilding of military hardware, power projection, logistics at all levels; the modern warfare future infantry soldier systems need full field testing and provability of aims which include integrating the soldier in the field with access to the same information as command and control is looking at plus gives them locations of all friendlies in the area of operation as well as known and suspected enemy locations and demarking landmarks as known cleared, unknown or known enemy occupied. The systems also permit the squad or platoon to spread over a larger area as each man knows the position of the unit to their right and left and allows for moving inline and giving orders, warnings or other pertinent or mission critical information through test allowing for quiet movement in possible enemy areas. These systems also link to drones, aerial and ground based, with both camera view and location scanned. This also gives command a better view of where assets on the ground actually are and they thus are not depending on “they should be here by now” and other inaccuracies. These systems being given testing by trial in mock training situation making them mission tested and ready to deploy should we require boots on the ground, and if the President does not desire boots on the ground, American troops are versatile if nothing else, they can wear sneakers and if that is too formal they could try wearing flip-flops but movement would be slowed.

 

The other area which is vital for the United States to address as it is also quite necessary for the world economy as well. The United States debt ceiling must be lowered and the debt decreased. This is not payment on the debt as it is now used, namely paying the interest payment and not touching the principle except to raise it half way through the year and then bumping it up every six weeks as you pass continuing resolution and refusing to pass a budget such that nobody can keep track of spending and the debt can be adjusted every couple of weeks as another extension of the budget with a ten percent increase over the last continuing resolution as we have to allow for a little manageable debt. This has been one of President Obama’s greatest deceits, the creeping debt ceiling where every continuing resolution grants the President the power to raise the debt ceiling an apparently insignificant amount always given as a percentage of GDP and never on actual billions or tens of billions of dollars, one billion dollars is one fourth of one percent, 0.25% or 1/4% (all if my math is remotely accurate), which appears insignificant until somebody breaks the news that that is half of the NASA budget which was considered wasteful. The other matter is these continuing resolutions pile up until you have as many as ten and always at the least five so we will give you the increase if there are merely seven continuing resolution each increasing the debt ceiling by 0.25%. Such an insignificant amount results in increasing the debt ceiling by a whopping 1.75% increase which if the debt is at $10,000,000 then at years end it would be over $10,725,000 which is a lot more than a simple one quarter of one percent raise they claimed they made because they made that increase multiple times. The actual increase from a ¼ % increase one needs to multiple 1.0025 times itself as many times as it was complimented thus making the formula for the actual increase to be (1.0025)n where n=the number of continuing resolutions. The debt ceiling being raised is probably the greatest threat to the future economy which means a threat to any military presence and influence over the world the United States would be financially capable of sustaining.

 

President Obama could be considered the John Lenin, not the Vladimir Lenin though that argument could be made, where he only added one verse to the song Imagine:

Imagine there is no America,
forcing her morals and opulence upon the world,
its catastrophic if it happens,
it’s easy if you try,
just look back to 1919,
when the system failed and left much in disarray.

For those confused, 1919 saw the greatest drop in the stock market value and almost all industry froze expecting a very long, long, long winter and governments were in a panic over what to do. They discussed nationalizing industry as they had misread the populace’s demands, and then there was the imposition of standards and regulations such that government and industry would cooperate. There was no upper limit to proposals and that was the magic. Every couple of days some economist played out the reasons for the crash and the required steps necessary to repair the problem such that it never occurs again. No two were alike as to what to do. Governments in Europe and the United States as well as elsewhere which were struck by the economic crunch debated and debated then debated further for quite a while. There was never a consensus and the government appeared as frozen as the economy and the crisis continued for almost a year and a half without government intervention to save the day. Finally the crisis calmed and reason prevailed and the government did that which was best, absolutely nothing beyond making great and historic speeches which nobody today remembers. The recovery came completely free of any government actions and quite probably because of no government action. The worst economic crisis which the history books refuse to cover was not in 1929 or anywhere through the 1930’s and that disaster only affected the United States where the government took immediate and necessary actions while in Europe the government, as in 1919, debated until the economy recovered on its own in about eighteen months while the United States went from one cure to another like a fish floundering out of the water. Will we ever learn, nope, that can be proven by asking random people simple question concerning something not taught any longer, civics. Simple questions like what are the three branches of government, how many members in the House of Representatives, how many electors in the Electoral College. My favorite is to take a copy of the Declaration of Independence modernized version and tell people you are collecting signature such that this document will need to be voted upon and potentially become adopted by the government but you need signatures to meet some set number. Watch the people freak out and call you so many varied and different names such as fascist, anarchist, communist and any number of other things all meant as pejoratives and insult.

 

Lastly, to make a few comments on this fall’s Presidential elections in the United States. The person elected to office will be initially critical to Israel. The growing crisis in Europe over the refugees will result inevitably in violence like never witnessed before. The reactions will propel the world onto yet another conflagration where the ending volley will come as a response to Iranian nuclear strikes on the United States. When communications break down in the usual levels and the conflict has proceeded to a point where a conflagration is sure to follow, the fleet commanders out to sea in submarines and surface vessels and all the bases around the world will do as their letters of command instruct, to the best of their ability determine who or plural who was/were responsible for the attack which broke off their communications links with all commands and take whatever measures are possible to mitigate the situation. If the nuclear submarines, boomers, determine or are informed that nuclear weapons were utilized in an assault on the United States, they will launch their missiles in order to eradicate the enemy which thusly destroyed the United States. Some nations believe that the United States is no different than them and only has a few number of vessels not in harbor safe and sound rather than roaming all points in the globe lurking in the depths awaiting commands and when not receiving such assuming that their bases were destroyed so they would contact the ranking officer outside the mainland and receive their new orders. These orders would take into consideration the launch point and nation behind the launch or assisting these attackers anywhere on the planet and launch nuclear Armageddon upon them such that there be nothing left for the twelfth Imam to come save. As the old commercials used to say, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature!” This version would be along the lines of, “It’s not survivable to fool with America” as her assets around the globe will kill you very completely. In conclusion, if the United States can instead of policing micro-aggressions at home and inspecting their navels, would instead look at the real and serious threats around the globe and address them in some assertive manner, then they would allow the real threats to be known and scheduled for destruction immediately and completely with no reservations or considerations for their populations, and should target and eliminate by any means necessary any credible and identifiable threats from abroad as they likely targeted locations which would directly affect families and friends back home. The American military need only break things and then simply advise that remaining population that they correct their governance and attitudes about all things of immediate concern otherwise the American military will return, break everything and give the survivors the same challenge, and repeating this cycle as long as necessary until any new governance poses no discernable threat to the United States or her allies. But there is the definite possibility the next American presence in the world will more appear as weak-willed and incompetent governance based on the people making the call through their elected representatives which if weak-willed would lead to their electing their own representatives for all the wrong reasons and falling for flashy commercials and tired old promises made every election cycle. America is, as Ronald Reagan pointed out, the last best hope for freedom in the world and that was correct. What he got wrong was should America as the beacon of democracy die, there will continue to be a beacon for democracy as there is another which can carry the seed though would be pressed to spread it through more than a value preserved and ready for when men’s souls yearn for freedom and seek within them such fortitude to risk all to fulfill their dream. Israel can be that spark but the nations of the world will need to provide the fuel that will light the fires of hope, freedom, liberty, justice, equality, and a will to risk everything they have to give their children the freedom they must in turn preserve. Freedom is a small flickering flame which can be fueled to burn so brightly, but also will become merely glowing embers which soon turn charcoal black and give off little if any heat unable to rekindle the flames. Those embers of freedom are currently losing their heat throughout Europe and America is trailing not all that far behind. Time is limited but ripe for a new burst of freedom; the next elections may be the determining factor between freedom and hopelessness engulfing much of the world. Will men and women realize and answer the challenge.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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February 17, 2015

A World Without America Revealed Through President Obama

 

I hope all those people throughout the world who complained for years how the United States was behind all the strife and warfare in the world are happy and are enjoying a world more to their liking. They claimed that wherever there was war, wherever there was trouble, wherever the world was falling apart, there you would find America and that was because America was the cause of what was wrong with the world. For the last six year we have had a world where America did not answer the alarm, did not take the lead, did not come when trouble settled in and made life impossible and the world started to unravel. President Obama called it “Leading from behind.” What he meant was that America would not answer the call unless others took the lead role. Did you notice any difference? We have.

 

The first difference was that even with America holding back she was amongst the first to show up with supplies and manpower whenever the problem was so large that it could not be ignored. Such as the 2011 Japan earthquake, tsunami and nuclear plant meltdown or the 2010 Haiti earthquake where the United States was either the first or second nation to be there and set up health care and other hospital services as well as search and rescue and virtually anything else which was required to help. Fortunately for the world the United States was still there in the lead when natural disasters struck. But for what President Obama referred to as “Manmade disasters,” the United States held her hand and waited for somebody else to rush in and for a special invitation before doing anything. The United States was not going to rush all over the globe putting out fires and responding to every emergency leaving the world to face its own problems, especially when the world as a force of nature was not the cause, we the human beings were the cause. Look around and see if this is the kind of world you want, the kind of world you desire. Probably the best example of what a world without America will become is plainly evidenced by ISIS which has metastasized and like a cancer has spread well beyond merely infecting much of Syria and Iraq and now spreading across Northern Africa, especially in dysfunctional Libya and now having Boko Haram claiming fealty to ISIS has now started to spread its terrorist claws beyond Nigeria and into Cameroon, Chad and beyond. The Islamist terrorist who struck the Paris kosher deli Hyper Cacher claimed to have ties to ISIS and there have been signs that ISIS has begun to infiltrate Gaza, Judea and Samaria with plans on replacing Hamas and Fatah and taking over the terror war with Israel. The fight against ISIS has really displayed the problem of a world where the United States does not take the lead.

 

The United States was still the first responder but just not as active as in the past as she was only willing to supply some of the air cover and air strikes aimed at supporting the Kurds and Iraqi military and in gathering a coalition, something the United States demanded be done before she would even join in giving air support missions. What is missing is having the United States supply the lion’s share of the fighting forces. Now in facing off against the threat of ISIS we have the entire world, especially those in the crosshairs of ISIS such as Saudi Arabia all waiting for the United States to provide troops on the ground before they will even consider sending their forces to fight. Instead they stand poised to defend their land should ISIS come knocking at their border but are loathe to fight ISIS where they are instead of waiting for ISIS to threaten their lands and people. What is wrong with such a strategy? Well, first off that means you will wait until ISIS feels they have the forces to take you on, on your own soil. That means allowing ISIS to grow in strength, numbers, equipment and training all before you take a stand and even then you wait for their assault, never would you go and strike them where they live, just as long as they do not invade your home. The exception thus far being Jordan, who is responding to the brutal and inhumane execution of their pilot by burning him alive in a steel cage by ramping up their air attacks against ISIS and is considering placing forces in the field to fight ISIS and destroy them. The United States President has promised to weaken ISIS and degrade their abilities and eventually weaken them to the point that the forces against ISIS will have the upper hand and will vanquish them. The notable part is the lack of American forces on the ground for any part of this conflict; the world is on its own.

 

There is more to this new order in the world that should frighten the average citizen who lives anywhere in the world where the norm had been the United States taking the lead and doing that which needed to be done, that world may have passed on by forever going forward. The United States has her own difficulties of which supporting an army spread throughout the globe and fighting in every theater even those which do not make the daily news has passed. Facing a monumental debt which can no longer be ignored and must be trimmed down, even if at the cost of a military force capable of being the world’s policeman thus the United States may be facing become more like the European nations and guarding their closest interests and hoping the other problems remain far from her shores. There is no new sheriff and the old sheriff has handed in his badge and retired, or at least taken a long holiday. For at least the next two years the world is going to have to find its own way and hold off the bad guys all by themselves. And to make matters worse, the next President of the United States might have a similar view of riding to the aid of every last cry for help as too high a price or even not America’s problem. There are Republicans as well as Democrats who feel the world will just have to get along without the United States to lean upon for support every time an ill wind blows by. Rand Paul is a noninterventionist and we know very little about Hillary Clinton or Senator Elizabeth Warren when it comes to foreign policy though we know that Hillary Clinton is more proactive than President Obama has been, though that should not be taken as too much comfort and almost anything would be more proactive than lead from behind Obama. We very well may have seen the end of Pax Americana and be entering a new phase for the world, the world beyond American interventions, so how do you like that idea?

 

We foresee some real problems and difficulties as should the United States step down from the role of leader of the free world, then who does the free world turn to to take up the role? It might be possible that the most outspoken leader of a Western power might be Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada. But this role is not a normative role and Canada will be getting a new Prime Minister in the upcoming elections, or at least that is what the pundits have predicted. We probably should not look to Canada to become the new leading nation with troops spread all over the globe in a leading role of protecting the realm from all harms. Canada has paid an outstanding role as best ally and we will put our shoulders to the stone along with the rest of the world and even be one of the leaders to speak up, but act as the savior of the world, probably not. Then there’s Britannia which once ruled the waves, but perhaps her last stand was her holding out against the Nazi assaults long enough to provide the United States with a jumping off point in the war in Europe during the last world gone mad war known as World War II. Even in that war the British relied upon every ship, boat, raft and rubber dingy to retrieve her embattled troops from Dunkirk in what became known as the Mosquito Armada and which very likely saved the war for the British as they could have lost the better part of their military had they not been pulled off by an armada which included far more civilian craft than anything else. For those needing reference, May 27 through June 4, 1940, the “Mosquito Armada” had managed to evacuate 338,226 allied troops while leaving almost all of their equipment abandoned on the beaches at Dunkirk. For more reading this is a good reference on what was officially referred to as Operation Dynamo. I guess we might look to either the European Union (EU) or possibly the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) though the latter often was simply another term for the United States. We could look to the United Nations (UN) though I have my reservations about troops wearing baby-blue helmets operating in an actual war zone as they would more likely make grand targets more than anything else. Apparently there is no ready and capable replacement for the role the United States has played for approaching a century, some might say since she entered World War I breaking the standoff which had raged for years with horrific tolls on both sides, tolls which were exceeded in World War II which makes any prospect of a World War III one of the most frightening prospects of all times.

 

So where does the world go if the United States has retired from their role of Guardian of the Realm, so to speak. Obviously there is no other Guardian of the Realm ready to step forward and the major coordinated alliances such as NATO, EU, UN, SEATO or the Anglo Alliance (English Speaking Nations of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Britain, and United States) which is an unofficial alliance of convenience made by speaking a similar language, many have noted the subtle differences and as was said by Winston Churchill, Oscar Wilde, or George Bernard Shaw depending on your preferences, “The United States and Britain are two nations separated by a common language.” The one thing which can be noted is that only one of the above entities is presumed to be empowered to settle any world problems which are brought before it, the UN. The EU and Anglo Alliance are more referred to as trade alliances which set up favorable treatment between nations for trade and commerce. SEATO and NATO have remained but is a treaty reliant on the powers of the United States largely and might still have sufficient bite as the United States is bound by treaty to come to these nations’ aid when called upon and theoretically this come to the aid part also presumably works in the opposite direction should the United States need assistance and saving from an attack on her shores. That brings us back to the United Nations and all one need ask is does anybody out there honestly believe the United Nations can be counted on to save the day? Us neither.

 

That returns everything to square one. Obviously the United States filled some massively large shoes which no other nation or group of nations seem able to or even willing to give it a go. That obviously means that the world is going to have to find some new way of opposing the ills which plague it from time to time and pray the United States gets out of bed after her slumber and puts on those unimaginably huge shoes and returns to guarding the gates against the barbarians and miscreants. In the meantime, the rest of the world will, by necessity, need to gird their collective loins and go forth and slay the trolls and ogres which threaten the peace and security of the nations of the world just in case the world is going to need to hold its own for the time being. The United States actually may have exhausted herself by the overextending its forces between Iraq and Afghanistan and need time to recuperate and renew her military. There is a chance that renewal of the American military might not be possible and the United States be relegated to playing just a supportive role and not take the fore on every charge going forward. I realize that is a sobering thought but it is a thought we must face just in case it becomes the reality with which we all must live. We may be facing not just a world without America but a future without America and that is the scariest thought of them all. This all depends on the next Presidential election and of all the candidates who have been discussed, not a one has what is needed if the United States is to raise back to her former glory and fulfill the role of Guardian of the Realm. There is one person we can recommend but alas they are not actually a politician, something which might be a recommendation for the next person to be President of the United States. Perhaps we should say the name but prudence says to remain quiet and hope his conscience wakens him to the call to come and repair what needs repair so that the world can once again depend on the United States to rescue those in need of rescue in times of peril. Without that hope the perils will only grow exponentially. One thing we learned, Hope and Change was not exactly what most of us thought it was and now we simply hope for a change back to the United States we once knew and often criticized and detested publically for her overbearance and brazen chutzpah, but now we have had our eyes forced open wide and glimpsed a view of a world without America, and do we like what we see, we do not and believe the vast majority agree with that view. Should the sleeping giant reawaken and return to that ever so difficult role, we must remember these times without America and welcome her lead rather than detest her greatness as her greatness is the world’s hope and we do not want that to change.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

May 16, 2014

The Hashtag Solution, A Solution for the Modern Age?

Even Michelle Obama joined in the recent new world technique of using social media as the solution to every problem joining the possibly many-millions to go to Twitter and post the #BringBackOurGirls as a protest against the Boko Haram kidnapping of close to three-hundred school girls in Nigeria. The people who joined in this protest were supporting the modern method of societal condemnation as a means to address a serious problem, and such an approach could likely have effects on many social and societal problems, but will not work anywhere near as well on a terrorist groups such as Boko Haram who firstly are not that likely to honestly care about a Twitter campaign even if they were to be on-line and actually even see it. This little phenomenon seems to be more wishes than substance and might serve to make some people feel empowered as they were capable of committing an act against this heinous criminal act of terrorism and perhaps for the reason that there was not much more that they could have been empowered to do, such an act is noteworthy. Unfortunately, in the real world where bullets and machetes are far more powerful than hashtags and terrorists in some remote parts of the world from those of us whose world revolves around hashtags and the like, this demonstration will have little effect on a desperate situation. But we would like to credit those who participated in this demonstration of solidarity with the plight of the Nigerian people in general and their kidnapped school girls in  particular and hope that the one result that might prove positive from their efforts comes to fruition, the nations with the military and enforcement resources and manpower take these wishes as further reason to take actual steps to end the reign of terror which has been perpetrated by Boko Haram over the past decades once and for all. Should that result and the #BringBackOurGirls be credited with having given any impetus to these actions, then hurrah for Twitter and social media’s now proven greater power. The one thing that has become evident is that those who are in positions to address this tragedy apparently needed some prodding, and that brings us to the reality that needs to be changed.

 

Where many might label First Lady Michelle Obama’s joining the social media efforts of the #BringBackOurGirls Twitter campaign as being useless, but had her actions also have caused her to pressure her slightly more strategically positioned husband, the United States President and Commander in Chief over the full might and capabilities of the United States military and intelligence communities, to actions which could go much further in bring this tragedy to a more acceptable end but through the lack of such actions it appears they have thus far not been so ordered. Just over a month ago the world mobilized unbelievable resources to seek over a far wider area including much of the Indian Ocean for an airliner which had fallen off tracking radars and transponders had failed or been switched off yet in this situation where the search area was considerable smaller almost no resources available to the many nations of the world were brought to bear. That asks the big question of why, were the apparent lives of the two-hundred-thirty-nine passengers and crew of the Malaysian jetliner more precious or more important than the slightly larger number of Nigerian school girls? Why was it completely understandable and logical to invest multiple-millions of resources looking for the possible, no matter how remote, survivors of a lost plane and not as understandable or logical to seek and free these innocent school girls in Nigeria? It is not as if there are not at least a half-dozen nations with Special Forces troops who are trained explicitly for just this sort of missions, saving abductees and kidnap victims from terrorists and criminals. Some nations such as the United States, Britain, Russia and Israel have what are touted as some of the best of the best at rescuing hostages held by terrorists who would likely have honorably volunteered to take on such a mission and would feel denied if their commanders refused to even suggest they be given the support and opportunity to save these innocent lives. I realize that there may be troops and special tactical units in the process at this moment working to save these young women and if there are we wish them G0d’s speed and blessings on their tasks at hand. But even if troops have not been tasked to assist, could not those nations with highly advanced surveillance aircraft and satellites have at the very least offered their use to at the very least pinpoint the probably location of these innocent victims thus providing some valuable information to those willing to risk it and take on this rescue mission? Surely locating young women held hostage by an internationally recognized terrorist group would take precedence over gathering meta-data of every electronic communication on the planet, and maybe those records could be combed to seek a clue, at least then it might serve a less nefarious purpose.

 

Then there are probably the most egregious factoids which have come to light about this entire situation which relate to the history of the Western nations with Boko Haram. The worst is that the United States State Department and then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton decided after other heinous assaults in Nigeria including the murdering of over fifty young men at a boarding school where many were killed in their sleep and others trapped within the school and burned to death yet there general consensus was not to label Boko Haram as a terrorist groups as doing so might actually give them a better standing allowing them to recruit more followers. The United States was not alone in refusing to label Boko Haram as a terrorist organization as neither had any other nations so labeled the group outside of Nigeria and the surrounding nations who were victim to their actions. This reluctance to call terror by its name and recognize terrorism when and where it rears its ugly violence appears to be a growing problem in the United States and much of Europe and even beyond. It often appears that the people in power and in the positions to make such determinations honestly believe that if they do not call terror by its name and identify terror wherever they find it then there will be less of a need to combat terror as it can be claimed that it is not as endemic a problem or as pervasive as it really had become. This is just another epidemic of see-no-evil, hear-no-evil, and never ever speak evil’s name and then maybe we can all go happily on ignoring the evil and it will not touch our lives. Somehow I can only believe that such an attitude will only lead to many more victims and a far more serious and possibly eventually an insurmountable problem simply because our leaders chose to ignore a festering problem and simply pretend it did not exist. This has never worked in the past and has inevitably produced some of the more horrific problems which have required enormous amounts of efforts and resources to finally defeat once the problem metastasized and left the world no choice but to excise it. That leaves one last question, what will be the final price this time and how many are the leaders of the world willing to sacrifice in their blinding will to pretend that all is well with the world and terrorism has been defeated and no longer poses a problem anywhere or in any measure. Such beliefs are beyond any rational thinking and are the refuge of those unwilling to take a stand on principles and protect the civilized world, the same civilized world they actually believe they are sparing the troubles and difficulties which confronting terrorism would cause. They honestly believe that by refusing to fight terrorism with equal or greater force will eventually defeat terrorism as the purveyors of terror will not continue to have the willpower to continue their fight to subjugate the world to their vision of a perfect world. The one thing history has proven repeatedly is that those with a vision of a perfect world, no matter how hellish their view, will never give up or surrender and must be opposed and beaten into submission and the longer the rest of the world allows such nightmares to continue and grow stronger, the worse the final conflagration necessary to eradicate that nightmare. Winston Churchill said it best stating, “Still if you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed, if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not so costly, you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance for survival. There may be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no chance of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.”

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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