Published Jul 26, 2008 3:01 PM
The New York branch of the revolutionary youth organization FIST (Fight Imperialism, Stand Together) first held a Marxist discussion on the role of the Dalai Lama and his entanglements with the CIA and then turned the talk into action. On July 17, as the anti-communist religious figure was speaking to a well-heeled crowd at Radio City Music Hall, some of whom paid $1,000 a ticket, FIST was outside protesting his role in fomenting propaganda against the People’s Republic of China. It also demanded U.S. hands off Tibet. Another group—a dissident sect emanating from Tibetan Buddhism—was also there calling the Dalai Lama a “liar” and “dictator” for repressing its believers and expelling its monks.
—Report and photo by John Catalinotto
More from America’s own commies..
Brig. Gen. Thomas L. Tinsley is Commander, 3rd Wing, Elmendorf Air Force Base. (Erik Hill / Anchorage Daily News)
Air Force: Incident under investigation
Anchorage Daily News
Published: July 28th, 2008 09:43 AM
Last Modified: July 28th, 2008 10:08 AM
The commander of the Third Wing at Elmendorf Air Force died of a gunshot wound in his on-base residence Sunday night, the Air Force said this morning. Few details are being released, but an Air Force spokesman said there was no indication of foul play.
Brig. Gen. Thomas L. Tinsley was declared dead around 10:30 p.m., according to a statement issued by the Air Force early this morning.
Elmendorf medical authorities responded, the statement says.
There was no indication of foul play, Lt. Col. Michael Paoli, an Air Force spokesman, told the Associated Press.
The incident is under investigation, the statement says. Military officials are expected to provide more details later today.
Tinsley had served as the wing commander since May 2007.
The statement quotes Col. Richard Walberg, 3rd Wing vice commander: “Elmendorf is focusing on taking care of Mrs. Tinsley and her family right now. We ask that your thoughts and prayers go out to his family as well as his Air Force family who regarded him as a mentor, leader, world-class Airman and friend.”
Tinsley’s Air Force biography says he was a command pilot with more than 3,200 flight hours in the F-15, F/A-18 and F-22A fighter jets. He previously commanded Elmendorf’s 12th Fighter Squadron and the 1st Operations Group at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia.
Prior to his Third Wing assignment, he was executive officer to the Chief of Staff of the Air Force.
He was commissioned in 1984 through the ROTC program at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Arizona. His biography says he was an F-15 instructor pilot, F-15C test pilot, wing weapons officer, exchange officer and instructor with the Royal Australian Air Force. He also has served in the Directorate for Plans and Policy on the Joint Staff and was executive assistant to the Deputy for Political-Military Affairs for Asia Pacific and the Middle East.
Elmendorf’s Third Wing flies F-22A and F-15C fighters, C-17 Globemaster cargo jets, C-12 passenger/cargo planes and E-3 AWACS, and maintains the regional medical facility for all forces in Alaska.
Friday, July 25, 2008
MANILA, Philippines — A Qantas flight en route to Australia from London made an emergency stop in Manila on Friday after a loud bang punched a hole in the Boeing 747-400’s fuselage, officials and passengers said.
There were no injuries, but some of the 345 passengers vomited after disembarking, said Manila International Airport Authority deputy manager for operations Octavio Lina.
In a statement from Sydney, Qantas confirmed the hole in its fuselage and said it was being inspected by engineers.
A report by the Manila International Airport Authority quoting pilot John Francis Bartels, said an initial investigation indicated there was an “explosive decompression.” There were no details.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau said QF30 made an emergency descent from 29,000 feet to 10,000 feet.
Lina said the cabin’s floor gave way, exposing some of the cargo beneath and part of the ceiling collapsed.
“There is a big hole on the right side near the wing,” he said, adding it was 2.5 to 3 yards (meters) in diameter.
Passengers who talked to the media at the airport described hearing an explosion and then oxygen masks were released.
“One hour into the flight there was a big bang then the plane started going down,” passenger Marina Scaffidi, 39, from Melbourne, told The Associated Press by phone from Manila airport. “There was wind swirling around the plane and some condensation.”
She said the hole extended from the cargo hold into the passenger cabin.
“The plane kept going down not too fast, but it was descending,” Scaffidi said, adding the jetliner was over the South China Sea when the staff informed passengers they were diverting to Manila.
“No one was very hysterical,” she said.
Australia’s Herald Sun Online quoted passengers as saying the plane plunged 20,000 feet after a door “popped” during the flight.
Michael Rahill, 57, an architect from Melbourne, said the bang sounded “like a tire exploding, but more violently.”
The passengers were taken to several hotels while waiting for another plane to Melbourne, said an airline officer who declined to be identified because he wasn’t authorized to talk to the media.
Chief Superintendent Atilano Morada, head of the police Aviation Security Group, said his officers, including explosives experts, may assist in the airline’s investigation.
“So far, they don’t want us to touch it, so we will respect the aircraft owner. But we will make our personnel available if they need assistance in the investigation,” he said.
Fri Jul 25, 2008 7:44am EDT
BERLIN (Reuters) – U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama hopes his visit to Europe and the Middle East will show U.S. voters that he is a safe pair of hands, the Democrat said in an interview on Friday.
“What this trip has done is allowed me to talk about some of the critical issues we face,” Obama said in an interview broadcast on CNBC television on Friday.
“It has also allowed me to send a message to the American people that the judgments I have made and the judgments I will make are ones that are going to result in them being safer,” he added. It was not clear when the interview was conducted.
Obama is trying to allay concerns among U.S. voters and address accusations from his Republican challenger John McCain that Obama, 46, a first-term senator from Illinois, lacks the experience in foreign affairs necessary to run the country.
Vietnam war veteran McCain is making national security a central focus of his campaign.
In a wide-ranging speech to over 200,000 people in Berlin on Thursday evening, Obama urged Europe to stand by the United States and stressed the need for unity in the face of new global dangers.
“I have firmly believed since the beginning of this campaign and the last several years that we can’t solve the problems we face in the United States alone,” Obama told CNBC.
“We’re going to be more effective if we’ve got an international coalition,” he said.
Echoing the message he gave in his speech on Thursday, Obama named Afghanistan, Iran, climate change and energy policy as areas in which the United States and Europe should work closely together.
Obama, who got a rock-star’s reception in the German capital, goes on to Paris later on Friday. In the last week, he has visited Afghanistan, Iraq and Israel.”>
Hussein has reassured me all right, he has reassured me that he is more concerned with the rest of the world than America. He has reassured me of his complete lack of experience in foriegn and military affairs. This asshat rushes through Israel so he can address a crowd at the shrine of German aggression. God forgive me, I’d take 1000 Hillarys over this Hitler-like re-incarnation..
Mon Jul 21 2008 12:00:25 ET
An editorial written by Republican presidential hopeful McCain has been rejected by the NEW YORK TIMES — less than a week after the paper published an essay written by Obama, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.
The paper’s decision to refuse McCain’s direct rebuttal to Obama’s ‘My Plan for Iraq’ has ignited explosive charges of media bias in top Republican circles.
‘It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama’s piece,’ NYT Op-Ed editor David Shipley explained in an email late Friday to McCain’s staff. ‘I’m not going to be able to accept this piece as currently written.’
In McCain’s submission to the TIMES, he writes of Obama: ‘I am dismayed that he never talks about winning the war—only of ending it… if we don’t win the war, our enemies will. A triumph for the terrorists would be a disaster for us. That is something I will not allow to happen as president.’
NYT’s Shipley advised McCain to try again: ‘I’d be pleased, though, to look at another draft.’
[Shipley served in the Clinton Administration from 1995 until 1997 as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Presidential Speechwriter.]
A top McCain source claims the paper simply does not agree with the senator’s Iraq policy, and wants him to change it, not “re-work the draft.”
McCain writes in the rejected essay: ‘Progress has been due primarily to an increase in the number of troops and a change in their strategy. I was an early advocate of the surge at a time when it had few supporters in Washington. Senator Barack Obama was an equally vocal opponent. ‘I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there,’ he said on January 10, 2007. ‘In fact, I think it will do the reverse.’
Shipley, who is on vacation this week, explained his decision not to run the editorial.
‘The Obama piece worked for me because it offered new information (it appeared before his speech); while Senator Obama discussed Senator McCain, he also went into detail about his own plans.’
Shipley continues: ‘It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama’s piece. To that end, the article would have to articulate, in concrete terms, how Senator McCain defines victory in Iraq.’
The DRUDGE REPORT presents the McCain editorial in its submitted form:
In January 2007, when General David Petraeus took command in Iraq, he called the situation “hard” but not “hopeless.” Today, 18 months later, violence has fallen by up to 80% to the lowest levels in four years, and Sunni and Shiite terrorists are reeling from a string of defeats. The situation now is full of hope, but considerable hard work remains to consolidate our fragile gains.
Progress has been due primarily to an increase in the number of troops and a change in their strategy. I was an early advocate of the surge at a time when it had few supporters in Washington. Senator Barack Obama was an equally vocal opponent. “I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there,” he said on January 10, 2007. “In fact, I think it will do the reverse.”
Now Senator Obama has been forced to acknowledge that “our troops have performed brilliantly in lowering the level of violence.” But he still denies that any political progress has resulted.
Perhaps he is unaware that the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad has recently certified that, as one news article put it, “Iraq has met all but three of 18 original benchmarks set by Congress last year to measure security, political and economic progress.” Even more heartening has been progress that’s not measured by the benchmarks. More than 90,000 Iraqis, many of them Sunnis who once fought against the government, have signed up as Sons of Iraq to fight against the terrorists. Nor do they measure Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki’s new-found willingness to crack down on Shiite extremists in Basra and Sadr City—actions that have done much to dispel suspicions of sectarianism.
The success of the surge has not changed Senator Obama’s determination to pull out all of our combat troops. All that has changed is his rationale. In a New York Times op-ed and a speech this week, he offered his “plan for Iraq” in advance of his first “fact finding” trip to that country in more than three years. It consisted of the same old proposal to pull all of our troops out within 16 months. In 2007 he wanted to withdraw because he thought the war was lost. If we had taken his advice, it would have been. Now he wants to withdraw because he thinks Iraqis no longer need our assistance.
To make this point, he mangles the evidence. He makes it sound as if Prime Minister Maliki has endorsed the Obama timetable, when all he has said is that he would like a plan for the eventual withdrawal of U.S. troops at some unspecified point in the future.
Senator Obama is also misleading on the Iraqi military’s readiness. The Iraqi Army will be equipped and trained by the middle of next year, but this does not, as Senator Obama suggests, mean that they will then be ready to secure their country without a good deal of help. The Iraqi Air Force, for one, still lags behind, and no modern army can operate without air cover. The Iraqis are also still learning how to conduct planning, logistics, command and control, communications, and other complicated functions needed to support frontline troops.
No one favors a permanent U.S. presence, as Senator Obama charges. A partial withdrawal has already occurred with the departure of five “surge” brigades, and more withdrawals can take place as the security situation improves. As we draw down in Iraq, we can beef up our presence on other battlefields, such as Afghanistan, without fear of leaving a failed state behind. I have said that I expect to welcome home most of our troops from Iraq by the end of my first term in office, in 2013.
But I have also said that any draw-downs must be based on a realistic assessment of conditions on the ground, not on an artificial timetable crafted for domestic political reasons. This is the crux of my disagreement with Senator Obama.
Senator Obama has said that he would consult our commanders on the ground and Iraqi leaders, but he did no such thing before releasing his “plan for Iraq.” Perhaps that’s because he doesn’t want to hear what they have to say. During the course of eight visits to Iraq, I have heard many times from our troops what Major General Jeffrey Hammond, commander of coalition forces in Baghdad, recently said: that leaving based on a timetable would be “very dangerous.”
The danger is that extremists supported by Al Qaeda and Iran could stage a comeback, as they have in the past when we’ve had too few troops in Iraq. Senator Obama seems to have learned nothing from recent history. I find it ironic that he is emulating the worst mistake of the Bush administration by waving the “Mission Accomplished” banner prematurely.
I am also dismayed that he never talks about winning the war—only of ending it. But if we don’t win the war, our enemies will. A triumph for the terrorists would be a disaster for us. That is something I will not allow to happen as president. Instead I will continue implementing a proven counterinsurgency strategy not only in Iraq but also in Afghanistan with the goal of creating stable, secure, self-sustaining democratic allies.
From Drudge. The media isnt even being subtle anymore; they are pushing the Hussein snake oil with reckless abandon.
There are rumors floating around that the Democrats are trying to raise Gas Taxes due to a shortfall in the Highway budget. It was discussed that it would be written into the 2009 budget.
Dont fall for it folks, this is a Howard Dean trial balloon. By using the threat of a tax hike, the ObamaDNCMSM, can put it on the table in exchange for, say, no offshore drilling discussion until after the election. This is classic ObamaDNC tactics; leak a trial balloon and see how folks react. If the response is positive, push it. Unpalatable? Use it as bargaining chip.
Monday, July 21, 2008
The belief that reporters are trying to help Barack Obama win the fall campaign has grown by five percentage points over the past month. The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey found that 49% of voters believe most reporters will try to help Obama with their coverage, up from 44% a month ago.
Just 14% believe most reporters will try to help John McCain win, little changed from 13% a month ago. Just one voter in four (24%) believes that most reporters will try to offer unbiased coverage.
A plurality of Democrats—37%– say most reporters try to offer unbiased coverage of the campaign. Twenty-seven percent (27%) believe most reporters are trying to help Obama and 21% in Obama’s party think reporters are trying to help McCain.
Among Republicans, 78% believe reporters are trying to help Obama and 10% see most offering unbiased coverage.
As for unaffiliated voters, 50% see a pro-Obama bias and 21% see unbiased coverage. Just 12% of those not affiliated with either major party believe the reporters are trying to help McCain.
In a more general sense, 45% say that most reporters would hide information if it hurt the candidate they wanted to win. Just 30% disagree and 25% are not sure. Democrats are evenly divided as to whether a reporter would release such information while Republicans and unaffiliated voters have less confidence in the reporters.
Republicans and unaffiliated voters are more likely to trust campaign information from family and friends than from reporters. Democrats are evenly divided as to who they would trust more.
A separate survey released this morning also found that 50% of voters believe most reporters want to make the economy seem worse than it is. A plurality believes that the media has also tried to make the war in Iraq appear worse that it really is.
A survey conducted earlier this year found that 30% of voters believe having a friendly reporter is more valuable than raising a lot of campaign contributions. Twenty-nine percent (29%) believe contributions are more important and 40% are not sure.
These results are consistent with earlier surveys finding that large segments of the population believe the media is biased It is also clear that voters select their news sources in a partisan manner. During Election 2004, CNN viewers heavily favored John Kerry while Fox Fans preferred George W. Bush.
Thats a nice way of saying, “The media is in the tank for Obama..” Look at his campaign swing through the Middle East and Europe-the guy is campaigning for King of the Planet. And the media is doing most of the work. All Network News anchors, ABC, CBS, ABC, are with Barack Hussein on the campaign trail to Iraq. Who’s covering Maverick’s campaign, the copy boy?
Energy guzzled by Al Gore’s home in past year could power 232 U.S. homes for a month
NASHVILLE – In the year since Al Gore took steps to make his home more energy-efficient, the former Vice President’s home energy use surged more than 10%, according to the Tennessee Center for Policy Research.
“A man’s commitment to his beliefs is best measured by what he does behind the closed doors of his own home,” said Drew Johnson, President of the Tennessee Center for Policy Research. “Al Gore is a hypocrite and a fraud when it comes to his commitment to the environment, judging by his home energy consumption.”
In the past year, Gore’s home burned through 213,210 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity, enough to power 232 average American households for a month.
In February 2007, An Inconvenient Truth, a film based on a climate change speech developed by Gore, won an Academy Award for best documentary feature. The next day, the Tennessee Center for Policy Research uncovered that Gore’s Nashville home guzzled 20 times more electricity than the average American household.
After the Tennessee Center for Policy Research exposed Gore’s massive home energy use, the former Vice President scurried to make his home more energy-efficient. Despite adding solar panels, installing a geothermal system, replacing existing light bulbs with more efficient models, and overhauling the home’s windows and ductwork, Gore now consumes more electricity than before the “green” overhaul.
Since taking steps to make his home more environmentally-friendly last June, Gore devours an average of 17,768 kWh per month – 1,638 kWh more energy per month than the year before the renovations. By comparison, the average American household consumes 11,040 kWh in an entire year, according to the Energy Information Administration. The cost of Gore’s electric bills over the past year topped $16,533.
In the wake of becoming the most well-known global warming alarmist, Gore’s film won an Oscar, and he won a Grammy and the Nobel Peace Prize. In addition, Gore saw his personal wealth increase by an estimated $100 million thanks largely to speaking fees and investments related to global warming hysteria.
“Actions speak louder than words, and Gore’s actions prove that he views climate change not as a serious problem, but as a money-making opportunity,” Johnson said. “Gore is exploiting the public’s concern about the environment to line his pockets and enhance his profile.”
The Tennessee Center for Policy Research, a Nashville-based free market think tank and watchdog organization, obtained information about Gore’s home energy use through a public records request to the Nashville Electric Service.
By Jon Hemming
KABUL (Reuters) – Presidential candidate Barack Obama called the situation in Afghanistan “precarious and urgent” on Sunday after meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai during an overseas trip meant to burnish his foreign policy credentials.
Afghanistan is also the No. 1 front in the war on terrorism and Washington needs to “finish the job” begun there after the September 11 attacks when U.S.-led and Afghan forces ousted the Islamist Taliban, the Democratic U.S. senator said in a television interview.
“We have to understand that the situation is precarious and urgent …. and I believe this has to be the central focus, the central front, in the battle against terrorism,” Obama told the CBS television program “Face the Nation” while in Afghanistan.
Obama, who visited U.S. troops and held private talks with Karzai, said the United States should start planning immediately for a shift of soldiers from Iraq to Afghanistan.
“I think the situation is getting urgent enough that we have to start doing something now,” he told CBS.
More than six years after the Taliban was ousted for sheltering al Qaeda, there has been a sharp rise in violence in Afghanistan this year.
The United States has about four times as many troops in Iraq as the 36,000 it has in Afghanistan, yet more U.S. soldiers were killed in Afghanistan than in Iraq in both May and June.
Obama wants to send two more brigades, or some 7,000 U.S. troops, to Afghanistan and shift the emphasis from what he calls the Bush administration’s “single-minded” focus on Iraq.
Earlier, Obama discussed terrorism, corruption and drugs with Karzai, who has led Afghanistan since 2001, but said the purpose of this trip was to listen rather than deliver strong messages.
Television pictures showed a relaxed Obama at the heavily guarded presidential palace in Kabul, talking to Karzai and flanked by fellow senators Chuck Hagel, Jack Reed and Afghan ministers.
The two sides talked about the problems facing Afghanistan and the region, Karzai’s spokesman said.
“We discussed things at the broad level, we did not discuss in details, but Senator Obama conveyed his commitment to …. supporting Afghanistan and to continue the war against terrorism with vigor,” said spokesman Humayun Hamidzada.
The Illinois senator will also visit Iraq, Jordan, Israel, Germany, France and Britain on a foreign tour he hopes will help answer Republican criticism that he does not have the experience to be commander in chief of the armed forces, one of the responsibilities carried out by the U.S. president.
Obama criticized Karzai last week in an interview with CNN.
“I think the Karzai government has not gotten out of the bunker and helped to organize Afghanistan, and the government, the judiciary, police forces, in ways that would give people confidence. So there are a lot of problems there,” he said.
Karzai has come under increasing criticism for not taking tough action to clamp down on rampant corruption, tackle former warlords and stamp out record-breaking drug production — all factors feeding the Taliban insurgency.
But Obama, asked before the trip if he had tough words for Karzai and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, replied “I’m more interested in listening than doing a lot of talking.”
“We have one president at a time, so it’s the president’s job to deliver those messages,” he said.
Karzai’s spokesman said that no matter who won the November 4 U.S. election, Afghanistan and the United States would remain strong allies.
Obama, Hagel and Reed earlier had breakfast with U.S. troops and discussed their experiences in the country.
Obama arrived in Afghanistan Saturday and was briefed by the U.S. commander of NATO-led forces in eastern Afghanistan.
This clown will destroy us. Paying lip service to the Military, knowing full well he is going to screw them is typical of Democrat; pander, pander, pander..
By Jon Hemming
KABUL (Reuters) – U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama met the commander of U.S. troops in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday to talk about the war he says is not getting enough attention from the Bush administration.
Obama made Afghanistan the first stop on an overseas trip aimed at proving his foreign policy credentials. He will also visit Iraq, Jordan, Israel, Germany, France and Britain.
“I want to, obviously, talk to the commanders and get a sense, both in Afghanistan and in Baghdad of … what … their biggest concerns are,” he told reporters before boarding a military flight from the United States. “And I want to thank our troops for the heroic work that they’ve been doing.”
Obama wants to send two more brigades, or about 7,000 U.S. troops, to Afghanistan to shift emphasis from what he calls the Bush administration’s “single-minded” focus on Iraq. He has called for a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq in 16 months.
The United States has about four times more troops in Iraq than the 36,000 it has in Afghanistan. But more of its soldiers were killed in Afghanistan in both May and June than in Iraq.
It is more than six years since U.S.-led and Afghan forces toppled the Taliban for sheltering al Qaeda leaders behind the September 11 attacks, but violence has risen sharply in recent months and there are few signs the insurgency is weakening.
Obama and fellow senators Jack Reid and Chuck Hagel got a briefing from U.S. General Jeffrey Schloesser, the commander of NATO-led forces in the east and U.S.-led coalition forces across the country at Bagram airfield, close to the capital Kabul.
“Following the briefing, the senators were able to meet service members from their respective states at Bagram, and also at Jalalabad Air Field,” the U.S. military said in a statement.
Jalalabad is close to the eastern border with Pakistan. NATO says attacks are up by 40 percent in the east this year due to ceasefires between Pakistan and militants in its tribal belt.
Obama’s Republican presidential rival, John McCain, also wants three more brigades in Afghanistan and pledged to find the extra troops by “asking NATO to send more and by sending U.S. troops as they become available.”
But despite the violence, many Afghanistan analysts doubted sending more troops was the answer.
“I don’t think decreasing or increasing troop numbers is going to yield a long-term stability here, or peace,” said Matt Waldman, policy adviser to Oxfam International.
More effective aid, rural development and conflict resolution at a local level are the real priorities, he said.
Foreign spending on aid and development is dwarfed by that spent on military operations in Afghanistan. The U.S. military alone now spends some $100 million a day, aid agencies say, compared with $7 million a day spent by all aid donors.
McCain criticized Obama for announcing his strategy on Afghanistan before leaving for the fact-finding trip.
“Apparently, he’s confident enough that he won’t find any facts that might change his opinion or alter his strategy. Remarkable,” McCain said in his weekly radio spot.
“This is similar to the mistake Senator Obama made when he confidently declared that the surge in Iraq could not possibly reduce sectarian violence there,” he said. “And it is precisely the success of the surge in Iraq that shows us the way to victory over the Taliban.”
Asked whether he would have some tough talk for Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Maliki, Obama said: “I’m more interested in listening than doing a lot of talking.
“And I think it is very important to recognize that I’m going over there as a U.S. senator. We have one president at a time, so it’s the president’s job to deliver those messages.”
Obama last week criticized Karzai in an interview with CNN.
“I think the Karzai government has not gotten out of the bunker and helped to organize Afghanistan,” he said.
Hussein to meet with Army commanders; I’ll bet they are thrilled. It’s getting really embarrassing to see all the worship for Hussein, but McCain and he are neck and neck in the polls. I guess not everyone is for changing the USA into a Third World cesspool..