Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

November 7, 2014

Friday Free Forum

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on November 7, 2014

On this day in 1913 the Great Lakes Storm begins, by the time the blizzard ends over 200 have been killed.

On this day in 1940 the Tacoma Narrows Bridge (AKA Galloping Gertie) collapses. Video here, collapse sequence starts about 2:25.

On this day in 1919 the first Palmer Raid is conducted.  Over 10,000 suspected communists and anarchists are arrested in over twenty US cities.

What’s on your mind related to homeland security?


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Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 7:50 am

1. Will there be a lame duck session of the Congress?

2. How will the 114th Congress address organizational issues?

3. Will events or the best laid plans of mice and men predominate between now and January 2017?

4. Will more members of the Obama Administration depart now-SOONER RATHER THAN LATER?


Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 8:06 am


Monday, December 19, 2011

The Budget Cycle and FEMA

While the rest of US enjoy the holidays the budget nomes at OMB are doing their thing having given the departments and agencies pass backs on their budget requests for Fiscal Year 2013 that begins October 1st of 2012. This could be the last budget submission of any Obama Administration ever and if the Republicans win or lose it probably is dead on arrival when transmitted with the State of the Union Address or shortly thereafter in early February. So why is in even being submitted? Well for one thing required by law. For another serves as a marker for all the debates and appropriations efforts to follow. And finally it does to some degree reflect how the Administration sees the world and its own role in world and US history.

Most of FEMA budget is in the 045 category of fiscal codes–meaning state and local support. Most of the rest of DHS is in other fiscal codes. For example, General Government is fiscal code 800. It is hard to get ahold of how these assignments are made but they often foreshadow problems to come. For example, when Civil Defense left the 050 national security budget and became part of 045 it ended its role as being of any interest at all to the Armed Services Committees or the Armed Services Appropriators. Until 1995 FEMA always had one or two Associate Directors whose Senate confirmation ran through the Armed Services Committee. Once that stopped with repeal of the Federal Civil Defense Act of 1950, Public Law 920 of the 81st Congress, DoD pretty well shrugged its shoulders on FEMA issues, and did learn from the 1992 LA riots not to federalize the NG for riots and civil disorders. In another blog I have recently argued that the real state role of the NG is in law enforcement for the Governors in riots and civil disorders and that the current lack of training of the NG for that role is dangerous. Others disagreed. See blog Sic Semper Tyrannis.

In recent blog posts here and elsewhere I have argued that in fact the EM community is small and growing smaller. Even the rest of the PUBLIC SAFETY budgets are in danger of full scale erosion with over 500,000 State and Local workers laid off many in the Public Safety arena. Now FEMA has take a huge hit, over $2 billion IMO, to its support for the STATES and their local governments first response community. This is enough to make it almost certain that some capability will not be just lost now but forever.

With over 100 declarations in CY 2012 by the President for disasters, an all-time high, is part of this reflection of diminished STATES and their local government capability? DoD really does not care what happens to STATES and their local governments just hoping to be kept out of their problems. That is why on base housing and schools is such a big issue. Isolation from the General Public is a conscience DoD strategy for both force protection and ensuring that the Armed Forces are not burdened with the problems of STATES and their local governments.

In the meantime, I understand the OMB passback on the FEMA budget was devastating reflecting a definite change in policy by the President with respect to FEMA. Not the least the Presidential deferrment of construction money for FEMA at St. Elizabeths. So far only the US Coast Guard and the DHS support staff locked in for that location.

The bottom line–stand by for an absolutely amazing State of the Union address as the President sallies forth to meet the voters in the fall. None seem happy with current disaster policy or the NFIP either in FEMA or Congress or the Administration. The result could be dramatic in 2012.

Posted by The Vacation Lane Group at 3:12 AM

Comment by Rubin, claire

November 7, 2014 @ 8:16 am

Last date in last sentence from Cumming says 2012. Is that what you mean?

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 8:25 am


1. The OMB budget guidance that went out in September to the departments and agencies from the WH for FY [fiscal year] 2016 [the FY beginning October 1st, 2015] could be made public!
2. GAO could start this year tracking “burrowing” from or by the appointed ranks into the CAREER SES. The law requires GAO to do this in 2016!
3. The so-called “Plum Book” could be published a year early.
4. The PRESIDENTIAL TRANSITION ACT could be made effective one year earlier and perhaps amended.
6. Anyone who receives a retirement check for 20 years or more of military service should have that check setoff from their civil service pay!
7. All non-career SES should receive two year contracts coinciding with the election cycle.
8 All Career SES jobs should be for a contractual period of 5 years with one renewal option by both parties consent.
9. A domestic civil crisis management and response system and chain of command should be established.
10. There should be an annual report to Congress on Programs, functions, and activities of DoD supporting the CIVIL DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES and the same for CIVIL SUPPORT TO DoD!

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 8:26 am

Claire! Yes the post was from before the 2012 Presidential election. Time flies!

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 8:27 am

Claire! Sorry it was FY 2012 n0t CY 2012!

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 8:45 am


PUBLIC LAW 104-201


Extract from House Conference Report No. 104-724

Domestic Preparedness

Enhancing the nation’s ability to prevent, and, if necessary, to respond to a terrorist incident involving nuclear, radiological, chemical, or biological weapons or materials is the cornerstone of this program. The conferees note that an interagency group, composed of the Federal Response Plan signatory agencies led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) completed and forwarded to the President on July 1, 1996, a report titled ”Consequences Management for Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical (NBC) Terrorism.” The report documents the inadequacy of the Federal Response Plan to deal with NBC terrorist incidents and makes specific recommendations regarding capability enhancements. The conferees agree to a provision (§1411) that would require the President to take immediate action to enhance the capability of the Federal Government to respond to such incidents and to provide enhanced support to improve the capabilities of State and local emergency response and law enforcement agencies to respond to such incidents. The provision would further require the President to provide to the Congress by January 31, 1997, [published in the Congressional Record on February 26, 1997] a report containing an assessment of such capabilities, improvements required, and measures that should be taken to achieve such improvements, including additional resources and legislative authority that might be necessary.

The conferees agree to recommend $50.0 million for the establishment of a domestic emergency assistance program for the Department of Defense to immediately begin sharing its unique expertise, experience, and equipment in dealing with chemical and biological weapons and materials with local emergency first respondents (firemen, policemen, and medical workers).

The conferees expect that the Secretary of Defense will work expeditiously with the Secretary of Health and Human Services in providing DOD resources and expertise to the Office of Emergency Preparedness for the formation of emergency medical teams that are trained and equipped to handle incidents involving weapons of mass destruction.

The conferees agree to provide $15.0 million for DOD to conduct interagency exercises that will focus on testing and improving the U.S. Government’s ability to respond to incidents involving weapons of mass destruction.
The conferees have agreed to an additional provision (§1414) that would require DOD to establish at least one Chemical-Biological Emergency Response Team for rapid response to domestic terrorism. The conferees expect that such teams would be similar in concept to the Nuclear Emergency Search Team and Accident Response Groups that are maintained by DOE for response to a nuclear incident. The conferees note in the joint DOD/DOE report [prepared in consultation with FEMA] to the Congress, “Preparedness and Response to a Nuclear, Radiological, Biological, or Chemical Terrorist Attack,” dated June 13, 1996, that the DOD is attempting to establish such a capability. The conferees note that many of the capabilities sought for such teams are already present in the Army’s Technical Escort Unit, Edgewood Research, Development, and Engineering Center, and Chemical Defense and Infectious Disease Medical Research Institutes. The conferees also note the Counterproliferation Program Review Committee’s “Report on Activities and Programs for Countering Proliferation’, dated May 1996, which states that the U.S. Marine Forces, Atlantic was scheduled to activate a Department of the Navy/Marine Corps Chemical/Biological Incident Response Force on June 1, 1996, to respond to chemical and biological incidents (terrorist or otherwise) occurring on naval installations and Department of State legations worldwide. The conferees understand that the unit has been activated and is now in training.
In §1416, the conferees agree to provide authority, very narrowly defined and carefully constructed, for the President and the Attorney General to request military support to local authorities in incidents involving chemical and biological weapons. This authority is in addition to the authorities otherwise provided in Chapter 18 of title 10, U.S. Code. The conferees agree that the use of the military in any emergency situation involving biological or chemical weapons or materials should be limited both in time and scope to dealing with the specific chemical or biological weapons-related incident.
Finally, the conferees have included a provision (§1417) that would require Federal Response Plan agencies to develop and maintain an inventory of equipment and other assets that could be made available to aid State and local officials in search and rescue and other disaster management and mitigation efforts associated with an emergency involving weapons of mass destruction, and would require FEMA to maintain a comprehensive master list of the inventory. The provision would also require FEMA to establish a data base on chemical and biological agent and munitions characteristics and safety precautions and to develop a system to provide federal, State, and local officials access to the data base and to the master inventory.

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 8:51 am


Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 9:13 am

More blasting from the past:

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Definitions of PPD-8

Several new definitions appeared in the March 30th PPD-8 issued under President Obama’s signature. These follow:

For the purposes of this directive:

(a) The term “national preparedness” refers to the actions taken to plan, organize, equip, train, and exercise to build and sustain the capabilities necessary to prevent, protect against, mitigate the effects of, respond to, and recovers from those threats that pose the greatest risk to the security of the Nation.

(b) The term “security” refers to the protection of the Nation and its people, vital interests, and way of life.

(c) The term “resilience” refers to the ability to adapt to changing conditions and withstand and rapidly recover from disruption due to emergencies.

(d) The term “prevention” refers to those capabilities necessary to avoid, prevent, or stop a threatened or actual act of terrorism. Prevention capabilities include, but are not limited to, information sharing and warning; domestic counterterrorism; and preventing the acquisition or use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). For purposes of the prevention framework called for in this directive, the term “prevention” refers to preventing imminent threats.

(e) The term “protection” refers to those capabilities necessary to secure the homeland against acts of terrorism and manmade or natural disasters. Protection capabilities include, but are not limited to, defense against WMD threats; defense of agriculture and food; critical infrastructure protection; protection of key leadership and events; border security; maritime security; transportation security; immigration security; and Cybersecurity.

(f) The term “mitigation” refers to those capabilities necessary to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. Mitigation capabilities include, but are not limited to, community-wide risk reduction projects; efforts to improve the resilience of critical infrastructure and key resource lifelines; risk reduction for specific vulnerabilities from natural hazards or acts of terrorism; and initiatives to reduce future risks after a disaster has occurred.

(g) The term “response” refers to those capabilities necessary to save lives, protect property and the environment, and meet basic human needs after an incident has occurred.

(h) The term “recovery” refers to those capabilities necessary to assist communities affected by an incident to recover effectively, including, but not limited to, rebuilding infrastructure systems; providing adequate interim and long-term housing for survivors; restoring health, social, and community services; promoting economic development; and restoring natural and cultural resources.

My comment: It will be of great interest if these definitions become widely used and accepted. That is what the Directive mandates but many departments and agencies or even sub-units of DHS don’t have a clue. I would suggest that a separate budget code be developed by OMB for each of these categories. According to the PPD-8 each definition defines program, functions, or activities that will be getting or already have their own national framework or strategy.

Each of these definitions deserve independent analysis. One basis for the analysis should be how do the definitions related to each other?

Posted by The Vacation Lane Group at 9:19 AM

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 7, 2014 @ 10:08 am

On this Friday and w/utmost serious concerns as to our – Homeland Security – and today my concerns far from our porous southern border which must be closed and laws enforced…it is the outright – mistrust of Barry Obama – and this perverse and tainted White House, a WH who has supported the Muslim Brotherhood and a WH who runs to Cairo to convey some sort of “apology” to the Islamic fundamentalists and a Chicago city street slicker who makes every effort to tell us just how peaceful and loving the same Muslim fundamentalists are while they kill innocent children, innocent children of the Lord so yes, on this Friday, with hopes that those Respected at NSA and throughout the “intel community” which this administration has certainly thrown under the bus far too often….hope and prayer that You have a full grasp of any such – secret letter – prepared and sent by Barry Obama to the enemy, Tehran! In fact, as a citizen, I ask that such contents be released unless our national security interests are to be compromised by such letter release, yet why would a “secret” letter sent to our enemy, Tehran have anything in its content which cannot be shared with all fellow Americans?

After all, this administration released five known terrorists and terror strategists back to the front lines and have protected a deserter among us as reported by many….what is in this “secret letter” and what conversations are taking place at the Wh between Washington, DC and Tehran, Iran? I would assume Merkel and Guttenberg have been monitoring such conversations and deliberations closely in anyway they are able to do so!

By the way, the same enemy which has sponsored terrorism globally, soon to have WMD in hand and Will use it against the State of Israel and even we here in the States and Tehran who will without question, share such WMD in multiple production with terrorist groups globally!

Here on “Main Street USA” there is no willingness that any discussions ensure between the US and Tehran as these “Brutes of Tehran” have far too much acknowledgement by this administration and the same Barry Obama who sat for twenty years in the Rev Wright pew and not getting up and leaving with Michelle Obama and their perverted and divisive mannerisms and direct bias when the Rev Wright stated more than once that as long as the “Zionist” had WMD in hand, it was ok for Tehran to have such as well…How absurd! Such hatred spewed against the Hebrew and we have seen so often the mistreatment and outright disrespect this administration led by Barry and Michelle Obama in their conveyance to Israeli leadership….

We are Not fools here on “Main Street USA” as demonstrated by this mid-term election result and it is time to seriously question this sitting eight year resident of the White House and his actions towards Tehran and specific the Middle East groups must be under strict surveillance. This “Chicago-Hollywood-Washington charade” so divisive, so perverse in their ways and contrary to standing forthright for our Judeo-Christian values and our Constitution, well folks, on this Friday and expressing concerns about national security and to those within, I remind you of the words of James madison (1785):

“If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be under the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. But, in reality, it will be an Enemy from within” –

The electorate has spoken not only to the Democrat liberals, however to the Republican party and We the People are Not pleased by the corruption we see in self-serving agenda and to Barry Obama, let me say now, put your pen away for We do Not need your biased mannerisms and your seemingly allegiance To Islam and extending your hand and apologizing for America when it is in fact Islam who does little to reign in such terror, such acts of violence against the weak, the sheep of our Lord and He in witness thereof and further, in the words of Samuel Adams (1775), “No people will tamely surrender their Liberties, nor can they be easily subdued, when knowledge is wide spread and Virtue is preserved. on the Contrary, when People are unwisely ignorant, and debauched in their mannerisms, they will sink under their own weight without Aid of foreign invaders” –


Friday, November 7, 2014

By David Francis with Sabine Muscat

Obama writes a secret letter to Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei as a nuclear deadline looms. The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that President Obama had opened a secret line of communication with Khamenei to broker a nuclear deal for U.S. assistance in fighting the Islamic State.

From FP’s David Francis and Yochi Dreazen, on how the fight against the Islamic State makes strange bedfellows:

“The Obama administration’s escalating campaign against the Islamic State has left the United States in the strange and uncomfortable position of working with Russia to prop up the beleaguered Iraqi military and forging a de facto alliance with Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad, who is battling the Islamic State on the ground while the United States bombs the militants from the air.

“But Thursday’s disclosure of a secret White House letter to Tehran is a reminder that the fight against the militants can’t be won without Iran — and that the president is willing to privately make moves that seem to be at odds with the public comments of one of his top advisors.”

The report comes at a key time in the negotiations. There are rumors that both sides are closing in on a deal. The Journal’s report also contains a key point: American allies in the region who opposed a deal, including Israel and Saudi Arabia, were not told of the correspondence in advance. In recent days, Iran has made public gestures to suggest that the sides aren’t in agreement. However, the possibility of economic reprieve after years of sanctions might be enough incentive for Tehran to relent.

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 7, 2014 @ 10:47 am

Check out book entitled “1919”!

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 7, 2014 @ 2:15 pm

By Andrew Becker November 5

Most of the people the Border Patrol stopped from sneaking into the country last year were from countries other than Mexico, according to agency statistics, a shift that might have provided fodder for politicians leading up to Tuesday’s election.

But they didn’t get much of a chance. The Border Patrol’s annual statistics were posted on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Web site for about five hours on Oct. 10, then taken down.

Now some are questioning whether that decision was an example of the Obama administration playing politics with public information.

Even before Tuesday, the administration said it was waiting until after the elections to deal with immigration reform so that any losses would not be blamed on the Democrats’ proposal. For some, removing the apprehension statistics — which both parties could use to criticize U.S. immigration laws — was a political move.

“It worries me that they may have been taken down for purely political reasons,” said Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah). “If the information is ready, it should be made available.”

But Customs and Border Protection spokesman Christopher O’Neil said in an e-mail that the decision to remove the briefly released data had nothing to do with the midterm elections. Rather, he said, it was an effort to provide all of the agency’s statistics — and not just the Border Patrol’s — “in one concise and comprehensive package.”

He said the agency had intended to publish the data by Oct. 31. But administrative delays in gathering statistics by operational elements caused the date to be pushed back several days. Customs and Border Protection now plans to publish before Nov. 15, he wrote. The early release, he said, was due to miscommunication.

“Someone got ahead of us, and then, someone else gave them to a reporter [without] coordinating with us,” he wrote, adding that in past years, the agency didn’t release statistics until well after January for the previous fiscal year. “No conspiracy, no politics, just good governance.”

The fact that the Border Patrol caught mostly foreign nationals not from Mexico might be an anomaly, but it underscores the border’s changing dynamics. The federal government still faces challenges in understanding who may be trying to enter the country without authorization.

With immigration a long-simmering issue, apprehension data have been leveraged by Democrats and Republicans. Current and former officials speculate that CBP may have wanted to stay out of the political debate as Election Day neared by not highlighting 2014 statistics.

Victor Manjarrez, a retired Border Patrol chief in Tucson, said the numbers can be interpreted — and exploited — in different ways, depending on the political party.

Many Border Patrol chiefs continue to feel “an incredible amount of pressure,” said Manjarrez, now the associate director of the National Center for Border Security and Immigration, a research group at the University of Texas at El Paso. “The fear is timing. If this was next year, it wouldn’t be a big deal.”

Since the 2014 fiscal year ended Sept. 30, bits and pieces of the annual statistics have dribbled out. The data show mixed results for the Obama administration, which has touted its border apprehensions, largely from Mexico, as the lowest level in decades.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson spoke about the number of apprehensions on the southwestern border in a speech at a Washington think tank on the state of border security shortly after fiscal 2014 ended.

Using slides to illustrate his remarks at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on Oct. 9, Johnson announced that the Border Patrol had made 479,377 apprehensions last year on the border. He saluted CBP for recently making public an internal report and new policy on the agency’s use of force. And he underscored “a commitment to transparency.”

The new annual statistics were posted and taken down within hours the next day.

The agency has kept posted data relating to the surge of unaccompanied minors from Central America caught at the border, which was a driving factor in the spike in “other than Mexican” apprehensions in 2014.

But the full data set, obtained by the Center for Investigative Reporting, shows a mixed bag. Apprehensions on the border have increased for the past three years. Yet border deaths fell to the lowest level since 1999. A majority of migrants — 252,600, or about 53 percent — caught on the border in 2014 were not Mexican. In contrast, a decade ago, Mexicans accounted for 93 percent of apprehensions, according to government statistics.

Andrew Becker is a reporter for the Center for Investigative Reporting, an independent, nonprofit newsroom based in the San Francisco Bay area.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 7, 2014 @ 2:22 pm


Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 7, 2014 @ 9:22 pm

A serious question some are posing to the Pentagon tonight and particularly to the Pentagon’s Special Task Force for Business and Stabilization Ops in Afghanistan, “Have you seriously negotiated with Tehran in the development of business ventures in Afghanistan?

As a new Hezbollah in Syria is developed by the Iranians in Syria and sanctions against Tehran and its insistence to have WMD in hand of course reading between the lines, and now coupled with apparently the third intifada the Israelis must now grapple with after another car attack and rioting at the holiest sites in Jerusalem, in reading Zechariah and Ezekiel and seeing reports of increased Hamas participation and Hamas’ reference that such recent attacks are “glorious” – this present White House and its eight year WH resident is obviously adhering to his own perverse Middle East agenda and soon East Jerusalem, not Jerusalem itself, however East Jerusalem will come under much attack as the US continues to wallow in its paralysis, its plague in failed leadership and strength to question and stand forthright against perceptions which are now shaping the Middle East and from readings, only to be addressed by Karl-Theordor zu Guttenberg as he will soon take the baton from Merkel and challenge Tehran! Imagine, Germany, our continued arch enemy and a Germany to shortly fill the void of a weakened America ….

God Bless us all;!

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 8, 2014 @ 5:24 am

China Unveils Laser
Drone Defense

GUARDIAN | November 3

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 8, 2014 @ 5:58 am

A world riddled with corruption and indifference to the value of Life and the individual w/those perpetrating such dastardly deeds stating that they are following Allah’s dictate….Really?

While western mannerisms and pornography are contrary and admittedly corrupt in so many ways and no different than throughout the Middle East whose ways are evidently far more perverse, whether one refers to God as Allah or another name, God’s laws have been quite clear and harming or killing another (individual) and making judgement against another and committing such outrageous and perverse acts w/God witness to all are Not….are Not Allah’s wishes or are within the clear and strong laws of our Creator w/all to remember that all individuals are children of Allah….God and the Creator of human beings who are more similar than different and all should be able to choose freely whether they choose Islam or Christianity as their way of Life and for others, some may choose not to follow either given the corruptness found among those who commit sin as Muslims or Christians….Enough is enough!

….whether one chooses to follow the Qur’an or read verse from the Bible, harming another in such a way as these young women have been brutalized is Not the way of God and repentance for humanity at large is in order today or much anguish for so many will again jeopardize humanity. It has only been 100 years from World War I and more recent since World War II and apparently few have been attentive to the lessons of history for many believe World war III commenced when the Germans (Assyrians) used the Americans at Kosovo as proxies and w/recent attacks in Jerusalem, many feel strongly that an attack on east Jerusalem is an objective of Hamas and others who will bring us even closer to another unfortunate segment in the history of mankind portraying brutality rather than not necessarily “embracing one another” however at least Respecting one another without imposing our values on another….

God Bless us all as we now await the entrance of Karl-Theordor zu Guttenberg who many believe will take the baton from Merkel and challenge Tehran and those in the Middle East, duping many and with the billions in arms sold already throughout the Middle East, a Germany who has taken advantage of a weakened America as a result of the incompetency and perverse nature of the eight year WH resident and Germany encircling tehran will bring much despair to many and there will be no turning back from what many consider World War III and much devastation….it will only be God’s hand who will thwart the obviously self-serving ways and vile nature of mankind….

Islam and Christianity are followed by billions of individuals and both promote Peace and Loving towards another, Not such beastly ways….

According to a new Guardian publication, the following and by the way for those who might not know what Boko Haram truly stands for: “Western education forbidden” – and reports state that most of these young women have been married off and have been forced to learn by memory, two chapters of the Qur’an, thus the latest:

The Guardian states:

Sixty women and girls have been kidnapped from two towns in north-east Nigeria, according to reports, dealing a fresh blow to government claims of a truce with the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

Residents of the town of Wagga told Agence France-Presse that suspected Islamist gunmen had gone door-to-door looking for young women and girls and abducted 40 of them.

Lazarus Baushe, an elder of the Wagga community, said: “They left 1,500 naira (£5.67) and some kola nuts in each home where they seized a woman, apparently as a bride price.”

Wagga is close to the town of Chibok, where nearly 300 girls were kidnapped by Boko Haram in April, triggering worldwide outrage and online activism. Some 219 are still missing.

Enoch Mark, a priest from Chibok who previously worked in Wagga, told AFP that an estimated 40 women and girls had been taken in the recent raid, an account supported by several others.

Witnesses in Gwarta separately reported a kidnapping at the weekend involving another 20 female victims, but details were not immediately clear.

The raids will intensify scepticism over a government announcement last Friday that it had achieved a ceasefire with Boko Haram, ending a five-year insurgency that has left more than 10,000 people dead. A senior aide to the president, Goodluck Jonathan, claimed the extremist group, which has been seeking to create an Islamic state in northern Nigeria, had agreed to release the 219 schoolgirls.

But Bulus Mungo Park, a volunteer vigilante fighter in Chibok, said on Thursday: “This is not the first time they have declared a truce. I don’t know if it’s going to be real. They have tried to hold dialogues before but it didn’t work. They had a ceasefire but there were still attacks in some places, so we can only pray.”

Violence continued unabated over the weekend. On Wednesday a bomb blast at a bus station in the town of Azare in Bauchi state killed five people – their bodies “burnt beyond recognition” – and injured 12 others, according to the police spokesman Mohammed Haruna.

Several witnesses said they believed the bomb had been planted in a parked car. The Azare resident Musa Babale said the explosion “shook buildings” and sent residents running for shelter. “The whole place was a mess,” he told AFP. No one claimed responsibility, but Bauchi has been a frequent target of Boko Haram attacks.

There has been no comment so far from Boko Haram’s purported leader Abubakar Shekau and hopes voiced by the presidency that the girls would be released by Tuesday this week came to nothing.

Mike Omeri, a spokesman for the Nigerian government, said the reported kidnappings had taken place in a remote area and were still being investigated. He denied that they showed the truce was void, suggesting that they could have been carried out by opportunist groups other than Boko Haram.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 8, 2014 @ 6:35 am

A state has a responsibility to protect its population from genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and ethnic cleansing.

The international community has a responsibility to assist the state to fulfill its primary responsibility.

If the state manifestly fails to protect its citizens from the four above mass atrocities and peaceful measures have failed, the international community has the responsibility to intervene through coercive measures such as economic sanctions.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 8, 2014 @ 6:48 am

Article. IV.

Section. 4.

The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion

Therefore, given the known and porous borders of our Respected States of the Union to our South so knowingly open to law breakers and damn convicted criminals which even the DHS has allowed to go free and walk among us and further even to terrorist quite possibly walking across such open borders as well noting the current administration’s intended encouragement and willingness to look the other way and burden our schools and population at large with undocumented and less than certified heath records and “law breakers” in every way and further, an obviously perverse US White House and executive administration allowing laws to go unenforced and embracing “illegal entry” by young and old who have Not adhered to immigration laws and application thereto, I shout from here on “Main Street USA” as do others as citizens of the United States and you who have taken oath of elected office per our most “entrusted” vote to thwart any further efforts in enabling this perverse US White House and its eight year resident in all its incompetencies and intended ways to circumvent our laws and Constitution to enforce the laws and hold this WH and executive administration and any other accountable for allowing laws to go unenforced and states’ borders to be open to known criminal!

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 8, 2014 @ 6:57 am



November 8, 2014

Article. IV.

Section. 4.

The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion

Therefore, given the known and porous borders of our Respected States of the Union to our South so knowingly open to law breakers and damn convicted criminals which even the DHS has allowed to go free and walk among us and further even to terrorist quite possibly walking across such open borders as well noting the current administration’s intended encouragement and willingness to look the other way and burden our schools and population at large with undocumented and less than certified heath records and “law breakers” in every way and further, an obviously perverse US White House and executive administration allowing laws to go unenforced and embracing “illegal entry” by young and old who have Not adhered to immigration laws and application thereto, I (WE) shout from here on “Main Street USA” as do others as citizens of the United States and you who have taken oath of elected office per our most “entrusted” vote to thwart any further efforts in enabling this perverse US White House and its eight year resident in all its incompetencies and intended ways to circumvent our laws and Constitution to enforce the laws and hold this WH and executive administration and any other accountable for allowing laws to go unenforced and states’ borders to be open to known criminal!


____________________________ __________________________________


Comment by William R. Cumming

November 8, 2014 @ 9:13 am

Chris T.! Your link is to another fine book by a distinguished British historian [female] who is widely recognized as expert on the period of WWI and afterwards.

My book 1919 is by an American and discusses the Palmer raids and events in the USA in 1919 including the “Spanish Flu” that started in Fort Riley, Kansas.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 8, 2014 @ 1:57 pm

Thank you Bill! I certainly will be searching for a copy.

…and a reminder of Roosevelt’s appearance in November ’43….My oh my has the world evolved and is still in the grip of the corrupt to again thrust us into being witness to far more than one or two WMD’s and here at the Tehran conference, Iran was acknowledged and some 71 years later this November, Iran having its hand in the game and to p;lay a far greater role in causing such a stir which none of these folks back in ’43 would have ever imagined:

Tehran Conference

The “Big Three” at the Tehran Conference

Left to right: Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill.

Date November 28, 1943 to December 1, 1943

Location Soviet Embassy, Tehran, Iran

Also known as Tehran Summit

Participants Winston Churchill (Prime Minister: Great Britain),

Franklin D. Roosevelt (President: United States)

Joseph Stalin (Prime Minister: Soviet Union)

Outcome Consensus to open a second front against Nazi Germany by 1 May 1944

The Tehran Conference (codenamed Eureka[1]) was a strategy meeting held between Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Winston Churchill from 28 November to 1 December 1943.

It was held in the Soviet Embassy in Tehran, Iran and was the first of the World War II conferences held between all of the “Big Three” Allied leaders (the Soviet Union, the United States, and the United Kingdom).

It closely followed the Cairo Conference which had taken place on 22-26 November 1943, and preceded the 1945 Yalta and Potsdam Conferences. Although all three of the leaders present arrived with differing objectives, the main outcome of the Tehran Conference was the commitment to the opening of a second front against Nazi Germany by the Western Allies.

The conference also addressed relations between the Allies and Turkey and Iran, operations in Yugoslavia and against Japan as well as the envisaged post-war settlement.

A separate protocol signed at the conference pledged the Big Three’s recognition of Iran’s independence.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 9, 2014 @ 10:11 am

Breaking News:

Five Syrian Nuclear Scientists Eliminated

The Syrian media reported that five nuclear scientists were eliminated by unknown assailants in the suburbs of Damascus.

Nov 09, 2014, 04:40PM | Rachel Avraham

There was a report from the Syrian media on the assassination of nuclear scientists within the country. A media outlet associated with the Syrian opposition reported that five nuclear scientists were killed by unknown assailants near the suburbs of Damascus.

According to one version of the story, the five had fallen victim to an explosive device that resulted in their deaths. Other sources claim that the five were fired at via a car traveling near the Harana Bridge. It is still unclear who is behind the elimination of the nuclear scientists.

In September 2007, a nuclear scientist was attacked in Deir E-Zor in north-east Syria. The attack was attributed to the Israeli Air Force, according to foreign media reports. It was said that there was a plutonium production nuclear facility under construction built under the auspices of North Korea.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 9, 2014 @ 10:13 am

Netanyahu mulling revoking citizenship of Israelis who call for state’s destruction
Wants to reinstate law cancelled in 2008, giving Interior minister discretion to revoke citizenship of disloyal citizens

Nov 09, 2014, 12:18PM | Yael Klein

PM Netanyahu

Prime Minister Netanyahu condemns recent riots nationwide, and considers taking a rare step by reinstating the law which revokes the citizenship of those undermining Israel’s security by calling for its destruction.

“We will act against those calling to establish a Palestinian state”, Netanyahu said yesterday.

The act of revoking citizenships is very rare in today’s democratic world. There are currently no states in the Western World which permit revoking citizenships on base of purely self-expressions.

The US, Canada and the Scandinavian countries prohibit this law. Greece, the UK and Australia allow revoking citizenships only in cases of treason or revolution attempts, as joining an enemy’s army.

The bill proposing to give the interior minister the authority to revoke citizenships has been pitched in the Knesset before, however it did not get enough votes.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 9, 2014 @ 6:54 pm

Breaking News:

President Obama repeated Sunday that he intends to change U.S. immigration law through executive action, over Republican leaders’ repeated requests to wait and dire warnings about the consequences of sidestepping Congress.

“I’m going to do what I need to do,” Obama told CBS’ “Face the Nation,” in an interview taped on Friday.

As he has said before, the president said he would prefer that reform legislation come through Congress, but that he has waited for more than a year for House Speaker John Boehner to pass a bill like the Democrat-controlled Senate has done.

“If a bill gets passed, nobody would be happier than me,” Obama said.

His remarks followed similar ones made Wednesday, which brought dire warnings from Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell that were followed by more on Sunday.

“I believe [executive action] will hurt cooperation on every issue,” Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., told “Fox News Sunday.” “I think it would be like the president pulling the pin out of a hand grenade and throwing it in as we are trying to actually work together. I am hoping that cooler heads at the White House can prevail.”

The comments by Barrasso, chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, followed Boehner warning Obama that using executive action would “poison the well” and McConnell, who will likely be the Senate majority leader next year, comparing it to waving a flag in front of a bull.

“Their time hasn’t run out,” Obama told CBS, arguing that legislation passed by Congress would supersede his executive action.

To be sure, the president is under pressure to use executive action on immigration reform, after promising Americans that he would by the end of summer, then delaying any action until after the midterms, which upset Democrats’ strong Hispanic base.

Obama also said Sunday that inaction is a “mis-allocation of resources” and that the country cannot continue to deport people who should be allowed to stay and keep those who should leave.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 10, 2014 @ 6:41 am

Breaking News:

At least 48 reported killed in suicide bombing at northeast Nigeria school

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 10, 2014 @ 9:42 am

Amazon has a rule that you must buy a book from Amazon before publishing a review on Amazon.

Having done so [buy from Amazon] I will be posting two short book reviews this week on the two books below:

1. US CIVIL-MILIATARY RELATIONS AFTER 9/11-Renegotiating the Civil-Military Bargain; [2011]
Author: Mackubin Thomas Owens;

2. PARAMETERS OF PARTNERSHIP-U.S. Civil-Military Relations In The 21st Century; [2014]
Authors: Sarah Sewell and John P. White

You do not have to buy the book from Amazon to read the review.

Comment by William R. Cumming

November 11, 2014 @ 8:50 am

John McCain graduated from the USNA in 1958! Wondering at how he will rule as forthcoming Chairman of the US Senate Armed Services Committee/

Comment by Christopher Tingus

November 11, 2014 @ 4:21 pm

Two Israelis Killed In Knife Attacks

An Israeli soldier and a woman were stabbed to death on Monday by Palestinian men, in two separate attacks in Tel Aviv and the West Bank. The perpetrator in the Tel Aviv attack was allegedly a man from the West Bank city of Hebron; the assailant in the second attack was reportedly a member of the hard-line Islamic Jihad. The attacks are the latest in a recent upsurge of violence in Israel and the Palestinian territories, most notably in Jerusalem, and have placed pressure on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to respond aggressively to tamp down on the unrest.

Ansar Bait al-Maqdis, the most lethal terrorist group in Egypt, pledged allegiance to the Islamic State. The insurgent group has staged deadly attacks against the Egyptian army and state institutions, most notably in the Sinai Peninsula, killing hundreds of soldiers and police officers since the military’s ouster of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammed Morsi last year. The link gives the Islamic State its first significant foothold in Egypt, while Ansar Bait al-Maqdis could benefit from its new partner’s wealth and tactical experience fighting in Iraq and Syria.

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