discarded lies: tuesday, may 23, 2017 9:42 pm zst
end-times boot camp
daily archive: 01/26/2005
zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
The Last Jew in Kabul
The caretaker of Afghanistan's only functioning synagogue and one of the last remaining Jews in Kabul has died. But the man now believed to be the sole survivor of this once-thriving Jewish community, who feuded bitterly for years with the deceased, said Tuesday he was not sad to see him go.

Ishaq Levin, about 80, died apparently of natural causes about a week ago in his quarters in the small synagogue in the Afghan capital, according to his 45-year-old Jewish neighbor Zebulon Simentov. The two lived for years in quarters at separate ends of the same synagogue.

"He was a very bad man who tried to get me killed," Simentov said, grinning as he warmed his feet on a diesel-burning stove in his run-down living room. "Now I am the Jew here, I am the boss."
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Crime and Punishment
Packen

Crime: Wanting a funny post

Smoking Gun: Argumentative mother-in-law

Punishment: Taking her beautiful baby boy away from her

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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
No Need to Feel Guilty in Germany
Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, the first German leader with no personal memory of the war, said in a speech on Tuesday that Germans bore a "special responsibility" for the Holocaust.

But a survey published in Stern magazine on Wednesday suggested that a solid majority of Germans do not feel guilty.

In the survey, conducted by the Forsa institute, 74 percent of over 1,000 respondents said they did not believe Germans today needed to feel guilty for killings at Auschwitz, compared to 20 percent who said they should.

German Far-Right Fracas on Eve of Auschwitz Ceremony


Sometimes I feel like I may be harping on the issue of guilt: after all, are the sons responsible for the crimes of the fathers? In the case of Europe, yes. We have a certain blindness when it comes to Jews. It was when I learned about the Holocaust that I realised my neighbourhood had been part of the Jewish ghetto, before the war, that the most beautiful mansions that adorned my city had belonged to Jews who died in Auschwitz and I felt guilty for not knowing any of this. I think the adults of my time should have felt even more guilty for not teaching it to me. And I'll feel guilty if I don't teach it to my children. Europe's attitude about Israel today is irrevocably tied in with this absence of guilt. Persecution of Jews on European soil has been occurring since ancient times and culminated in the Holocaust. How can we possibly not keep that in mind when we argue about Israel while Nazi propaganda is resurfacing once again?

(many thanks to lewy14 for the Haaretz article)
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
South Korea To Restructure Military Like France
Why? Don't they want to win wars?
Budaechigae II (via The Marmot's Hole)
Seoul to Follow 'French Style' Troop Reduction, Modernization

PARIS, Jan. 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will likely follow the defense restructuring of France, which involves reduction of troops and modernization of equipment, South Korean diplomats stationed here said Friday.

"We should follow the direction of France, which cut the number of its troops to 455,000 from 600,000 between 1997 and 2002," when the country began recruiting fully-paid soldiers instead of a mandatory conscription system, a diplomat said.

The remark is in line with President Roh Moo-hyun's instruction in December that the Defense Ministry present to him plans for a French-style defense restructuring in February, when the ministry is to hold a New Year's briefing session on its policy agenda.

The Defense Ministry announced Thursday that it will trim 40,000 troops from the total 690,000 by 2008 as part of efforts to reshape its military structure.

"One of the major tasks facing the French military in restructuring was how to help retired soldiers get adjusted to society in the process of troop reduction and equipment modernization," another official of the South Korean Embassy here said.

French Defense Minister Michele Alliot-Marie briefed Roh in detail about the French military's reshaping in early December last year when Roh made a visit to France, the official said.

Since then, South Korean diplomats here have collected information on French military restructuring, and officials from the presidential National Security Council flew to Paris to discuss the issue, according to the official.

"There is a possibility that a French team will visit Seoul on the issue at an opportune time," he said.
The comments over there are pretty interesting. Especially lirelou's comment, which I decided was so good I'm lifting it:
At the risk of drawing flak, there is one American here who had an intimate knowledge of the French forces prior to 1990. (brevete parachutiste a Pau avec le 6me RPIMa, #512390) I emphasize “had? because realities change. Prior to ending the draft (which dates back to the Directory and was the model for ALL modern Armies), France had a professional force of approximately 30,000, and the remainder 1,000,000 consisted of draftees. The draft in the 1990’s was for a single year. During that year the unit trained the draftees themselves, integrated the training companies into the unit as line companies, and still allowed each draftee 45 days leave a year. For anyone familiar with military training, you can imagine the headaches this caused to the professional cadres. Essentially, the army was a subway turnstile. Discipline within many of the draftee units can best be described as “gallesque". They did their jobs, usually well, but their attitude hardly equalled the rock hard “marsouins", paras, or legionnaires. The professional core of the French Army was a 30K man contingent of professional officers and NCOs, with small numbers of “marines? (the old Colonials were re-termed “troupes de marine? in 1958), or long term enlistees, options which required a 3 year enlistment (the Legion’s is 5). A small number of draftee units were highly professional. These included the paratroops (entry for draftees required that the volunteer have taken an airborne version of High School ROTC, generally in conjunction with an extension of the draft committment to allow a scheduled deployment overseas), marines, and some elite draftee units.
The Legion at the time numbered 9,000 . I believe it is now down to 7,000 .
While most Americans assume that the Legion is some separate command of the French Army, it is not. It is governed by its own internal regulations specifically tailored to the Legion, and it preferes to maintain unit integrity during deployments, but it is an integral part of the Army and the very nature of deployments requires tailoring task forces to each job, and in this task the French Army was superb. The task force staff would generally be organized around a specific command (e.g. 11th Airborne Division, 9th Marine Division, both now brigades), but the components of that task force came from throughout the Army. Marines, Legionnaires, and draftee unit cadre or volunteers could all find themselves serving together in Lebanon, CAR, Ivory Coast, Rwanda, or anywhere else that France committed to, and the Americans who ran into them (often air force crews) tended to identify them all as “legionnaires? due to their good-natured ignorance of the French Army, but also in recognition of their qualities. Regarding “quality? I found all French regulars to be at least as competent and well trained as their counterpart U.S. Regular forces. There were even French ways of doing things that I found superior. The French NCO corps within the professional units was as good as that of the British Army, which is superior to that found in U.S. Army garrisons and non-elite units. They took a hands on approach to training, and generally had more time in tactical units than their U.S. counterparts. The officer corps was a bit more professional than their U.S. counterparts in attitude, but similar in training and experience. (Again, while the British had some incompetents in occasional staff and unit assignments, their commanders tended to be far more experienced than their U.S. counterparts given the advantage in rank structure for platoon and company command, and the relative short period of time between company, battalion, and higher command. Also, there is a quality difference between Guards, Paras, and other units.) As an example of areas in which the French excelled are what I term “adult? leadership. A lieutenant colonel deploying with a task force could make his own decision as to the uniform to be issued the troops. To this end, he could mix and match issue uniforms, or spend funds to purchase non-issue cammy patterns off the shelf. Unit crest? He could modify his own units, or mix and match elements of all the task force units to come up with the unit’s own design. Small items, but ones which within the U.S. Army would have to go all the way up a labyrinth chain of command. To illustrate other command powers he had, take the 1978(?) combat jump at Kolwezi. The French (2nd REP) came in without parachutes because they were not supposed to jump. But reports made it clear that civilian deaths would result if they did not get to Kolwezi soon. Solution: Scrounge for parachutes among the Zairan armed forces. This resulted in T-7 U.S. manufactured, but Zairan packed and maintained parachutes. OK, we jump with these. Aircraft? Also a problem. A mixture of C-130s, to include one from the Zairan Air Force (blew a tire taxiing for take-off). Hey, get it fixed and we go. Result: successful mission, some injuries on the jump. Now, this was the Legion, but I assure that if it had been the 3rd or 8th RIPMas, the result would have been the same. Unfamiliar chute, foreign owned and packed, out of aircraft you’ve never jumped before, one of which blew tires taxiing for take-off! U.S. Army? SF or the Rangers would go. A battalion of the 82nd Airborne? The line doggie troops would have the spirit, but the decision would have to go all the way back to Fort Bragg, and would likely get bounced out of division up to Corps with a sidetrip to the Airborne Board. By which time, you’d have had dead hostages at Kolwezi.
If you like to pound the French government, go right ahead. They deserve it. But if you want to knock those who wear the French uniform, you are beating the shit out of Peter to get even with Paul. No one often despises the French government more than the military, who have had to live with the results of their policies.
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Russia Has A Naval Base In Syria
UPDATE: Syria can offer Israel 'complete calm' because...why? Revealing, isn't this? Syria's able to control the Palestinian terrorists with offices in Damascus, and the Hezbollah terrorists, and everything else. Assad and his regime must pay for this.

This could certainly seriously complicated any US move against Syria! This item's from MEED-I've quoted in its entirety because their registration annoys me:
Damascus appeals to old ally for support

25 Jan 2005

Syrian President Asad arrived in Moscow on 24 January for a four-day state visit, shortly after Russian President Putin underscored the long-standing political alliance between the two countries by saying Russia planned to “use the Syrian route? to influence the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
What on earth does that mean? Maybe if Syria wasn't belligerating to Israel this would begin to remotely be plausible. I think it's just talk, considering how often and with such finality Jerusalem continues to reject any Syrian overtures. Syria's getting more desperate as time goes on, by the way-their foreign minister just offered Israel "complete calm" in exchange for "complete withdrawal" from the Golan Heights. So they want a hudna plus the strategic land back that they lost in a war of aggression, as the reward for decades of terror? What do they smoke in those hubbly bubblys?
Syria has come under increasingly heavy pressure from Washington since late 2003, with repeated accusations that the government has failed to secure its borders with Iraq. Moscow also faces strong diplomatic pressure from Israel to call off a wide-ranging arms deal with Damascus which is reported to include hand-held Igla surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), Kornet-E anti-tank missiles and Almaz SAMs. Both governments have denied reports that Russia also intends to sell the Iskander E short-range ballistic missile to Syria.

The Syrian delegation is also expected to focus on efforts to write off its Soviet-era debts, which are estimated at $12,000 million-13,000 million. Russian newspapers have reported that Moscow is prepared to write off as much as $10,000 million, although it plans to retain its military port in Tartous – Russia’s only foreign naval outpost in the world.
That Russia is getting anything at all for the Soviet debts is news, because Damascus' line until now was utter refusal to pay the Soviet debts to Russia. So clearly Russia is offering Syria something to get its hands on this cash because the Assad regime isn't going to change its mind out of the goodness of its heart. What is it? Promises about future Security Council machinations perhaps? And what is Russia doing in Tartous, exactly?
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guest author: Jim Russell in Discarded Lies:
Transcending Party Loyalties
As fervently as I am on the side of the good guys - us - in the global conflict in progress, I find the unsettling arguments contained in this article to coincide so very unfortunately with my understanding of the dynamics of the history of life, war, politics and history. What happens next is almost never what you expected to happen.

A "War" is almost never over completely until one side or the other is most certainly and completely broken in both military power and human spirit; in other words, loss of "hope." As important as it may be, civil defense will never be more than, pardon a pun, a bandaid. A nation can never prepare adequately for all possible and unforeseen eventualities any more than it can defend every cove or remote border post or every street corner in the land from military adventure or terror or subterfuge due to limits of available manpower, finances and predictive capabilities. That said, success in all things depends on the degree of preparation and within the limits which are bound to occur, we are doing what we can.

How much more could be accomplished with the support of the other 50% of the nation will only be tested if an incident of such magnitude occurs which will evoke a "Pearl Harbour" type response so strong the political left will be swept away in a wave of public opinion which transcends party prejudice and loyalties.
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Navy Volunteers
We wrote about the USS Lincoln participating in the relief efforts in Indonesia and one of our readers wondered if the letter was a hoax, since the author was using a pseudonym. Perhaps James G. Pinsky, journalist 1st Class (SCW/SS) can convince her otherwise.
Navy medical personnel from USS Abraham Lincoln’s (CVN 72) Carrier Strike Group are volunteering to assist survivors of the Dec 26. tsunami in Southeast Asia.

Navy doctors and corpsmen normally assigned to support their respective squadrons are flying into remote locations within the Aceh province of Sumatra, Indonesia, to help victims recover from wounds, infections and disease.

“We’re seeing infection, pneumonia and malaria,? said Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Melissa Crowe, Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (Light) (HSL) 47 Saberhawks. ?But most of our medical sites have wounds and infections.?

Many times, medical personnel share cargo space with humanitarian aid aboard the helicopters. Once the helicopter lands, they assist the air crewmen and distribute aid, and work with local villagers to get a medical assessment of the survivors at each landing area.

Flying into remote parts of the tsunami-stricken area of Indonesia allowed Crowe to see firsthand what the survivors were enduring.
Read it all: Corpsmen Assist Tsunami Survivors
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guest author: Jefe in Discarded Lies:
Traveling Around Ireland With The Band - Day 4
Day 4 - Saturday
Derry - Omagh - Dublin

On the bus leaving Derry, we agreed on one thing: The Derry hotel towels were the best. Actually, two things: That Brian Wilson cd that someone put on was seriously f-d up. What is with that vegetable song? While traveling through Northern Ireland, Joe the driver would point out which neighborhoods were heavily Republican and which were Unionist. As he also noted, though, he didn't really have to. Storefronts were painted in partisan colors making it obvious.

Lunch was in Omagh. A new running joke was born: Fatty Bum Bum. The parking lot, adjacent to a very old church, was adorned with graffiti stating that "----ya sucks c*ck" (apparently they gave up early while removing it) and "Fatty Bum Bum". We were sure not to park in Fatty's spot. After lunch, we stopped in the closet of an off-license (The Irish name for liquor stores, since their licensed to allow liquor to be taken off the premises) to stock up on fuel. Baileys, Magners, and bottled water got everyone through the long bus rides.

After crossing back into the Republic, we headed into the capital, Dublin. Our hotel was right off St.Stephen's Green. More importantly, it had a large adjacent bar, Kitty O'Shea's. After dinner, we headed out for Whelan's, where the night's concert would be. The show was a blast (Whelan's is a great place for a small show like that), but, afterwards, they opened up to the adjoining bar for what seemed to be Saturday Night Dance Party. After getting tired of not being able to move, a few of us headed back to the hotel to hang out at Kitty O'Shea's, where everyone eventually ended up. They soon closed, though. Fortunately, everyone had Room 520 written on their hands at some point. In Room 520, we found the next party, complete with beer on the balcony overlooking Dublin, and these incredible chocolates that the Neck fiddler kept giving out.

Eventually, the hotel people had enough and cleared us out. We didn't have to leave until around noon, so we got lots of extra sleep.

to be continued...
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