Thermobaric weapon

Wikipedia

The American Military used one of these recently in Afghanistan, and gave it a lot of publicity. It was the most powerful non-nuclear weapon ever! The technical details were sketchy, and did not satisfy me.

This Wikipedia article tells me more than I really wanted to know. I was under the impression that this was something new, but they were used by the Germans in WWII. And then perfected by the Soviets, and are now used extensively by the Russians.

In September 2007, Russia exploded the largest thermobaric weapon ever made. Its yield was reportedly greater than the smallest dial-a-yield nuclear weapons at their lowest settings.[30][31] Russia named this particular ordnance the “Father of All Bombs” in response to the United States developed Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb whose backronym is the “Mother of All Bombs”, and which previously held the title of the most powerful non-nuclear weapon in history.

The use of this bomb no doubt impressed the American public – and made them think we were winning the war!

But the war in Afghanistan is a war that cannot be won. Suppose the Americans used enough of these to kill every living thing in the whole country – people, sheep, goats, ducks – everything! What then? Would the people who re-populated the place be to our liking?

Probably not.

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Millions of Dollars Spent on a Cruise-Missile Attack that Accomplished Nothing

I sure hope I am wrong here.

But after doing all other things I wanted to do this fine morning – taking a shower – and having to time to reflect on current events, while I was drying off. I thought things over.

Maybe things went like this:

The American military was desperate to show the rest of the world how powerful it is – which it certainly is – without going to war with a first-class military.

Everyone’s attention was focused in Syria, with its low-class (but very nasty) air force – so this was the logical place to show how the American Military was, by comparison – super powerful! A gas attack on innocent civilians was the perfect excuse.

Over 50 Tomahawk cruise-missiles were launched toward a single airfield – each one of them worth a good part of a million bucks! You can do the math.

The smart thing to do would have been to have launched them toward Syrian aircraft – but the American Military had no idea where they were! Probably in some other airfield.

This massive military exercise had to be documented, to show the folks at home, and to show the military what the results had been. So a fighter plane was launched at the same time – carrying nothing but cameras to record the action. It could easily keep up with the cruise missiles, that have wings, so they can fly low, under any radar coverage, and surprise the enemy.

The cruise missiles located the airport – they could hardly miss it. And dove in to the attack, blowing plenty of holes in the dirt. But they missed the runway entirely! One photo of this was released, and then vanished – because it showed no damage had been done. If they had hit a aircraft hanger, for example, or some aircraft, this would have cleared marked on the photograph.

Why was this done, what was it supposed to have accomplished?

The Fighter

New York Times Magazine

The Marine Corps taught Sam Siatta how to shoot. The war in Afghanistan taught him how to kill. Nobody taught him how to come home.

This is a very long article, but it does not discuss a fundamental problem – most of today’s youth cannot be productive workers in our highly technical society. Siatta could only be a fighter – nothing else.

This is clearly a deficiency of our schools – but our schools only teach what our parents want them to. They do not want to teach them how to learn.

Washington’s America-First Commandos in Africa

TomDispatch.com

Americans would be the best-informed people in history – if they read locations like this – or if they read anything at all.

I have a cousin (female) whose children are all members of the military – or married to them. She even has a son who suffered a serious head injury in Afghanistan, and is permanently disabled.

No one in our extended family (except me) finds this the least disturbing. This only the battle between Good and Evil – and we are on the right side.

Disciples of Distrust

NY Review

This is so good, I can hardly believe it!

This is what makes blogging so interesting. You get to pick through heaps of garbage, looking for the pearls in it.

I liked this sentence especially:

Leaders are made by followers. The real question should be: what did the followers want that they could supply?

Coming from a Mormon background, I asked myself the same question about Joseph Smith, the founder of Mormonism. What did his followers get from him? The answers, which the Mormons themselves strenuously object to, are fascinating – but had everything to do with the impact of Industrialization – the big event of the 19th Century.

Garry Wills focuses in the Iraq War – probably a good place to look in our time.

An American General is Killed in Afghanistan

Harper’s Magazine – July 1016

By a member of the Afghan military, using a American rifle.

This story is not being widely circulated – to read it online you have to subscribe to the magazine.

The problem can be summarized briefly – when you have a foreign military, financed and equipped by Americans, working closely with American troops – you are bound to have some random killings of the Americans. There is no way this can be prevented.

In this case, it was an American general – who like most generals, never intended to leave the safety of the Pentagon.