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Belmont Club

The Age of Ambiguity

August 20th, 2013 - 5:07 pm

They don’t call the news infotainment for nothing. It has more coincidences and subplots than a daytime soap opera.  The Wall Street Journal writes, “allies thwart America in Egypt”. The “allies” listed include the UAE, the KSA and Israel. Wait a minute, aren’t allies supposed to help America?  OK, maybe that’s what enemies are for.

We learn from the Free Beacon’s that the Syrian rebels, who the administration is promising to support are threatening — America — in an article titled, ”American, European Jihadists in Syria Raise New Domestic Terror Fears”.

It writes that a” ‘wave of terror could result from training, expertise gained in fighting with al Qaeda rebels’ — Significant numbers of American and European jihadists are traveling to Syria to join Islamist rebels, prompting new fears of a future wave of al Qaeda terror attacks in the United States and Europe, according to U.S. officials.”

The rebels are learning to use, among other things, the Chinese FN-6 MANPAD, which Janes says shot down a Mig-21 over Syria. So maybe it can take down an airliner. Foreign Policy notes the Chinese weapons are seen in company with another MANPAD model, the Russian SA-24. “The heat-seeking SA-24 is designed to hit targets flying at speeds of up to 720 miles per-hour and can fly as high as 20,000 feet and reach a top speed of 890 miles per-hour; a nasty little weapon.”

Foreign Policy asks: ‘how did the MANPADs get to Syria?’ It writes:

Interestingly, there are reports that SA-24s were smuggled out of Libya in during or immediately after the war to oust Muammar al Gaddafi in 2011 and ended up in the hands of militants in Gaza and Syria’s Levantine neighbor, Lebanon.

While it would take “dozens” of SA-24s to do serious damage to Assad’s air force, it would only take a few of these systems ending up in the wrong hands to pose a serious threat to civilian aircraft.

Libya? Libya? Now why does that name sound familiar? Maybe somebody should ask Susan Rice. Maybe somebody should ask the guy in LA who made a video if Libya rings a bell. But never fear: the administration has everything well in hand, as shown by this lead from the Daily Beast. “Senator: Obama Administration Secretly Suspended Military Aid to Egypt”.

The U.S. government has decided privately to act as if the military takeover of Egypt was a coup, temporarily suspending most forms of military aid, despite deciding not to announce publicly a coup determination one way or the other, according to a leading U.S. senator.

Secretly, so nobody who doesn’t read the papers knows about it. It turns out to be more complicated than that. The current status of US aid to Egypt is actually unknown, in a case similar to that of Schrodinger’s cat, which is both alive and dead. The Christian Science Monitor explains in its exact status in an article, “Crisis in Egypt: US seeks to preserve influence. Is there any left?”

The administration’s hesitant approach and its fuzzy answers to questions on current US policy toward Egypt appear to have fostered confusion Tuesday over whether or not the US has in fact halted military assistance.

An aide to Sen. Patrick Leahy, a Vermont Democrat who has called for a suspension of military assistance, was quoted Tuesday as saying the administration had informed Senator Leahy’s foreign operations subcommittee that “transfer of military aid was stopped.”

The aide, David Carle, went on to say that the suspension was “not necessarily official policy,” according to the Associated Press, and that “there is no indication how long it will last.”

Administration officials poured cold water on any claims of a halt in aid, however, with Pentagon spokesman George Little saying categorically, “There has been no decision to halt or to suspend assistance to Egypt.”

At the State Department, deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said Tuesday “We have not made a policy decision to halt our aid to Egypt, period.” At the same time, Mr. Obama planned to hold a cabinet-level meeting Tuesday afternoon at which the question of aid to Egypt would be addressed, officials said.

The administration doesn’t know if Egyptian aid is alive or dead. In fact, they don’t even know when they will know if the aid package is dead or alive. But the administration is nothing if not subtle, unlike that stupid cowboy George Bush. Maybe the way it works is that everyone these days pretends: the Obama administration pretends to give Egypt aid while the KSA, UAE, Egypt and Israel pretend they are America’s allies. That way it all evens out.

But this is a world where we learn from the Muslim Brotherhood that Abdel Fattah Saeed Hussein Khalil el-Sisi, the new strongman in Egypt, is actually — and secretly — Jewish, which would explain everything. Secret aid, secret Jew. But this is only temporary. The New York Times reports that Hosni Mubarak, who is at least not Jewish, has been ordered freed by an Egyptian court. Heee’s baack. The former Egyptian President, shown below in a recent photograph, looks little the worse for wear.

Ready for my comback tour

Ready for my comeback tour with Jay-z

Meanwhile in other news, thousands of Syrian refugees have been flooding into Iraqi Kurdistan from Syria, part of nearly 2 million who have left the country. “Up to 10,000 crossed at Peshkhabour on Saturday, bringing the total influx since Thursday to 20,000. The UN says the reasons are not fully clear.” Take a guess. Take a wild guess.

Reversal of fortune

Reversal of fortune

Well nothing much is “fully clear” in the world of infotainment.  Things have to be explained to us by David Gregory or Candy Crowley. Like the next headline, from Outside the Beltway “there’s a hearing at Gitmo so secret that even the people having the hearing aren’t allowed to know what it’s about.” That’s OK. The people holding the hearing probably don’t know what it’s about either.

 


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Top Rated Comments   
SMOKE AND MIRRORS

I spoke to a senior official of the Obama administration the other day, and he told me, on condition of anonymity, that all was going as planned and not to worry, that Obama had things well in hand. He said:

“I’d rather break my tibia
Than say all’s well in Libya
We know Khadaffi’s manpads left the scene
But that was just a clever move
As more events will surely prove
And in due time you’ll see just what I mean
We’re playing chess here and we’re White
A pawn ahead and playing tight
And win or draw we’ll come out in the end
Much better off than we are now
And while we seem to scrape and bow
Our word’s a bond on which you can depend
We’re fighting world depravity
And thankfully it’s gravity
Will pull them down a peg and then it’s mate
In Egypt Morsi will be back
Our policy will simply tack
And that’s what makes Obama truly great
In Syria the rebels win
But if they don’t we’ll just begin
Another game and quit while we’re ahead
Iran won’t get the bomb unless
They figure out our full court press
And if they do, well only Jews are dead
You see we look at us with pride
There’s competence on every side
And may I say there’s genius here as well
The nuanced game is what we play
We dance and dodge throughout the day
And smoke and mirrors is the stuff we sell.”

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
For the Big O it's not about anything. Egypt, Smeegypt. Just finesse that stuff.

It's really about getting those stupid 18-30 year olds to pay for Obamacare.

It's really about targeting the Tea Party while denying any targeting.

It's really about using the EPA to end run Congress.

It's really about crippling the Big O's political enemies.

It's really about consolidating as much domestic political power to the Big O as possible

That's what it's really about. No ambiguity there, ist das klar??
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"what's it all about"
Free beer? Alfie? Tickets for Hillary's next Listening Tour?

The Saudis UAE Israelis and hopefully Egyptians are starting to express the knowledge that most Americans are slowly coming to accept. Being the enemy of Obana is not the same as being the enemy of America.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (19)
All Comments   (19)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
"The Wall Street Journal writes, “allies thwart America in Egypt”. The “allies” listed include the UAE, the KSA and Israel. Wait a minute, aren’t allies supposed to help America? OK, maybe that’s what enemies are for."

That was profoundly unfair of you.

Firstly, we ARE helping America. Your foreign policy is currently handled by crazies, or whatever motive you ascribe to them. In any case it isn't doing you any good. The theocratic MB ruling Egypt isn't good for either the Egyptians or your own regional interests, and also for your regional allies. The military rule or the rule of almost any non-Islamist party that is less radically anti-American is far better for your own interests (as well as ours). The army deposed the MB as a response to massive demonstrations in the streets, possibly unprecedented in size. Yet the US insists the MB must have more access to power. That is a very grave mistake as far as your own interests go (as well as ours), and we are saving you from your own blunders.

Secondly, the MB is a genocidally anti-Semitic movement. They oppose the peace agreement with Israel and want Israel exterminated, but it's not even limited to a regional national Arab-Jewish conflict, but is seen by them as part of a larger fight against the Jews, based on their theological doctrine. Generally, we want to help America, but our self preservation is our first priority much like your self preservation is your first priority, so we won't help you achieve your goal here if achieving your goal means a greater existential threat to us.

But wait a minute, aren’t allies of Israel supposed to avoid putting Israel at a greater existential risk? Aren't Israel's allies supposed NOT to support parties that seek Israel's destruction? Aren't Israel's allies supposed to OPPOSE the rise of genocidal anti-Semitic movements rather than demand they have more access to power? OK, maybe that’s what enemies are for.

Americans better learn that allies are allies and not slaves that you own and that will gladly die and have their children murdered by Nazi-like movements just because you believe it's in your own best interest. It's not us who pretend to be allies. It's you who call yourselves allies and then backstab your allies left and right, and then still have the gall to complain about being betrayed when the allies you betrayed simply act for their own survival.

Aren't you the ones who always say allies can have disagreements? Well here the disagreement is as follows: You support a party that wants to exterminate us, and we disagree. Are we betraying you or are you betraying us?

Imagine if during the Cold War we had supported pro-Soviet communists in taking over Mexico and Canada, right across your borders, like you help the MB take over countries and entities right across our borders (not just Egypt, you were the ones who insisted Hamas should participate in the elections, even though it violated the Oslo Accords, and both Israel and the PLO objected) and help various jihadis take over countries elsewhere in the region. If we had done the same thing to you during the Cold War and you had tried to prevent hostile communist regimes right across your borders, who would be the bad ally - us for trying to give your worst enemies a better opportunity to try and eliminate you, or you for simply trying to defend yourselves?

You really do have a nerve.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Mark Dice videos Wretchard? Don't get all Kremlin/Alex Jones/Paulbot agitproppy on us or I may have to denounce you to @Streetwiseprof, @StopAgitprop, @LibertyLynx and Little Green Footballs.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Obama was simply waiting to read about the aid to Egypt issue in the newspapers.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Has anyone looked into with whom the 0 is playing all this golf? Isn't this a cover for him to conduct business he doesn't want to flaunt, and work as a smokescreen to encourage folk to underestimate him? I have no facts or evidence for my question, just an intuition.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
His last foursome was reported as two heavy donors and an aide to someone.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
To be sure, it's not Amb. J. Christopher Stevens, he completed his "round" 6-under.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All is well. Our "team" is formidable:
0-bama, Jarrett, Susan Rice and John Kerry. Actually, right now it's Jarrett and Rice-Obama is busy playing golf, gobbling fried shrimp and flying his dog and basketball to Martha's Gin-yard on an unused Benghazi Osprey; Kerry is windsurfing in his metro-sexual neon wetsuit.
For all us rubes here at BC, Tom Friedman, E.J. Dionne, Gwen Ifill, Candy Crowley and David Gregory will soon explain the genius behind the strategy of neither voting present nor being present.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
SMOKE AND MIRRORS

I spoke to a senior official of the Obama administration the other day, and he told me, on condition of anonymity, that all was going as planned and not to worry, that Obama had things well in hand. He said:

“I’d rather break my tibia
Than say all’s well in Libya
We know Khadaffi’s manpads left the scene
But that was just a clever move
As more events will surely prove
And in due time you’ll see just what I mean
We’re playing chess here and we’re White
A pawn ahead and playing tight
And win or draw we’ll come out in the end
Much better off than we are now
And while we seem to scrape and bow
Our word’s a bond on which you can depend
We’re fighting world depravity
And thankfully it’s gravity
Will pull them down a peg and then it’s mate
In Egypt Morsi will be back
Our policy will simply tack
And that’s what makes Obama truly great
In Syria the rebels win
But if they don’t we’ll just begin
Another game and quit while we’re ahead
Iran won’t get the bomb unless
They figure out our full court press
And if they do, well only Jews are dead
You see we look at us with pride
There’s competence on every side
And may I say there’s genius here as well
The nuanced game is what we play
We dance and dodge throughout the day
And smoke and mirrors is the stuff we sell.”

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The "anonymous" "senior" "administration" "official" may be playing chess but it's unfortunate that everyone else is playing backgammon [chouette].
;^)
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
For the Big O it's not about anything. Egypt, Smeegypt. Just finesse that stuff.

It's really about getting those stupid 18-30 year olds to pay for Obamacare.

It's really about targeting the Tea Party while denying any targeting.

It's really about using the EPA to end run Congress.

It's really about crippling the Big O's political enemies.

It's really about consolidating as much domestic political power to the Big O as possible

That's what it's really about. No ambiguity there, ist das klar??
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Things will go as they go.

When you don't have a handle on a chaotic function it tends to resist any small efforts and for that matter may also resist large efforts. Obambus is the embodiment of one of Hawkeye Pierce's favorite sayings, when told it's the least he could do responding "Never let it be said I didn't do the least I can do." Fart in a windstorm, that's our POTUS. Hey maybe that's actually the optimal strategy, it's just that we *know* that's going to be his strategy, optimal or not.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"Libya? Libya? Now why does that name sound familiar? Maybe somebody should ask Susan Rice. Maybe somebody should ask the guy in LA who made a video if Libya rings a bell."

Whatever happened to that report to the effect that 400 MANPAD missiles were supposed to have been stolen along with the attack on Benghazi? Was it discredited or did it just vanish from the radar? Or was its source just silenced?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It's all too much. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop, for the war to begin. Even at work, I check the news compulsively during the workday.

It's like standing in the middle of a thunderstorm, watching lighting strike all around. It's comforting in a morbid sense because it reminds me who is in charge of that immense power.

Same thing in the middle east. One empathizes with those suffering from the conflict, but still you know who's in charge of this mad house.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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