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Member since: Thu Jan 12, 2012, 03:24 PM
Number of posts: 12,170

Journal Archives

Russian Missiles Aimed at Syria Crashed in Iran, U.S. Officials Say

Cruise missiles fired by Russia from warships in the Caspian Sea at targets in Syria crashed in a rural area of Iran, senior United States officials said on Thursday.

It was unclear exactly where in Iran the missiles had landed, or whether there were any casualties. The officials said the flight path of the Russian cruise missiles would have taken them across northern sections of Iran and Iraq on the way to Syria. But not all of them made it there, one official said.

The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss military intelligence.

News of the crashes, which were reported by CNN, came as Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter sharply criticized what he called Russia’s “unprofessional” conduct in its incursion into Syria. Speaking at a NATO news conference in Brussels, Mr. Carter said that Moscow had fired the barrage of cruise missiles with no advance notice.


If Obama is truly sorry for bombing MSF hospital, killing 22, he'd call an independent investigation

If Obama was genuine in his apology and want to find out what happened, he would join MSF in calling for an independent investigation.


Doctors Without Borders airstrike: US alters story for fourth time in four days (admits war crime)

US special operations forces – not their Afghan allies – called in the deadly airstrike on the Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz, the US commander has conceded.

Shortly before General John Campbell, the commander of the US and Nato war in Afghanistan, testified to a Senate panel, the president of Doctors Without Borders – also known as Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) – said the US and Afghanistan had made an “admission of a war crime”.

Shifting the US account of the Saturday morning airstrike for the fourth time in as many days, Campbell reiterated that Afghan forces had requested US air cover after being engaged in a “tenacious fight” to retake the northern city of Kunduz from the Taliban. But, modifying the account he gave at a press conference on Monday, Campbell said those Afghan forces had not directly communicated with the US pilots of an AC-130 gunship overhead.

“Even though the Afghans request that support, it still has to go through a rigorous US procedure to enable fires to go on the ground. We had a special operations unit that was in close vicinity that was talking to the aircraft that delivered those fires,” Campbell told the Senate armed services committee on Tuesday morning.

The airstrike on the hospital is among the worst and most visible cases of civilian deaths caused by US forces during the 14-year Afghanistan war that Barack Obama has declared all but over. It killed 12 MSF staff and 10 patients, who had sought medical treatment after the Taliban overran Kunduz last weekend. Three children died in the airstrike that came in multiple waves and burned patients alive in their beds.

On Tuesday, MSF denounced Campbell’s press conference as an attempt to shift blame to the Afghans.

“The US military remains responsible for the targets it hits, even though it is part of a coalition,” said its director general, Christopher Stokes.


What is the DNC "criteria for participation" in the debates?

On May 5, 2015, a DNC press release set the number of debate at 6.


The last line of the release said:

Additional details regarding debate partners, cities, dates, logistics, additional host states, and criteria for participation will be released at a later date.

In July, DWS said “It’ll be a threshold that’ll be expansive and allows for the maximum inclusion of our major party candidates," bu that the DNC hasn’t “quite finished formulating the details” for the debates.

Has the criteria for participation been released? If so, what is the criteria?

As worries rise, Hillary Clinton camp says stick to the plan (read like a post mortem)

These days, Hillary Rodham Clinton and her senior campaign staff sound like old-school investment advisers when the market has a stomach-lurching drop: Remain calm, they say. Don’t panic. And stick to the plan.

Faced with her worst poll ratings since she was losing badly to Barack Obama in 2008, Clinton is doubling down on a strategy laid out months ago. As drawn up by campaign manager Robby Mook and others when Clinton was seemingly invincible, the prospectus is a detailed month-by-month, state-by-state strategy to roll out serious policy proposals, raise a prohibitive amount of money, lock up Democratic delegates and woo members of her party’s disaffected left.

It was designed to win what had been presumed to be a somewhat dull primary without looking too presumptuous. Now Clinton has a full-on fight on her hands against a surging Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and faces the possibility that Vice President Biden will make a late entrance. Biden sits at roughly 20 percent in recent polls, and most of that support appears to come from erstwhile Clinton voters.

* * *

Top campaign aides have told nervous supporters in recent days that none of the bad news is an argument to veer from the plan or lose heart. Mook does some of the hand-holding himself, telling donors that as the 2016 race gels this fall and winter, the “fundamentals” he has set in place will be a bedrock no other candidate on either side of the race can match.

Press secretary Brian Fallon describes the campaign’s approach as “heads down, marching forward, onward and upward.”

If that does not sound very cheerful, Fallon and other Clinton aides and associates suggest patience and a deep breath.

“There is always going to be second-guessing of any strategy,” and the test is whether the strategy falls apart under that scrutiny, Fallon said, that “when adversity arises, that you not deviate from the plan, that you stick it out, remain confident and ride out whatever turbulence you may encounter.”

The original plan assumed that Clinton would easily dispatch a challenge from her left before moving on to the general-election contest, where her center-left views, long résumé and hawkish national security credentials would have broad appeal.

Advisers did not seriously contemplate that Clinton could lose to the dark-horse Sanders in New Hampshire or Iowa, as current polling suggests she could, or that her perceived weakness would be an invitation to Biden.


Good read on what is going wrong ans how HIllary's Camp is not fixing it (even if they could).

No, Bernie Sanders is not going to bankrupt America to the tune of $18 trillion

The big policy headline today comes from the Wall Street Journal, which delivers this alarming message:

Price Tag of Bernie Sanders’ Proposals: $18 Trillion

Holy cow! He must be advocating for some crazy stuff that will bankrupt America! But is that really an accurate picture of what Sanders is proposing? And is this the kind of number we should be frightened of?

The answer isn’t quite so dramatic: while Sanders does want to spend significant amounts of money, almost all of it is on things we’re already paying for; he just wants to change how we pay for them. In some ways it’s by spreading out a cost currently borne by a limited number of people to all taxpayers. His plan for free public college would do this: right now, it’s paid for by students and their families, while under Sanders’ plan we’d all pay for it in the same way we all pay for parks or the military or food safety.

But the bulk of what Sanders wants to do is in the first category: to have us pay through taxes for things we’re already paying for in other ways. Depending on your perspective on government, you may think that’s a bad idea. But we shouldn’t treat his proposals as though they’re going to cost us $18 trillion on top of what we’re already paying.

And there’s another problem with that scary $18 trillion figure, which is what the Journal says is the 10-year cost of Sanders’ ideas: fully $15 trillion of it comes not from an analysis of anything Sanders has proposed, but from the fact that Sanders has said he’d like to see a single-payer health insurance system, and there’s a single-payer plan in Congress that has been estimated to cost $15 trillion. Sanders hasn’t actually released any health care plan, so we have no idea what his might cost.

But health care is nevertheless a good place to examine why these big numbers can be so misleading. At the moment, total health care spending in the United States runs over $3 trillion a year; according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, over the next decade (from 2015-2024), America will spend a total of $42 trillion on health care. This is money that you and I and everyone else spends. We spend it in a variety of ways: through our health-insurance premiums, through the reduced salaries we get if our employers pick up part or all of the cost of those premiums, through our co-pays and deductibles, and through our taxes that fund Medicare, Medicaid, ACA subsidies, and the VA health care system. We’re already paying about $10,000 a year per capita for health care.

more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2015/09/15/no-bernie-sanders-is-not-going-to-bankrupt-america-to-the-tune-of-18-trillion/

Hillary and her SuperPAC just welcomed Bernie Sanders to the top tier.

Thank you and welcome to Sen. Sanders.

We have ourselves a Democratic Primary.

Question submitted by morningfog

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I don't get Hillary's apology for mixing State and personal business on her private email

Why apologize for it?

It was stupid, it was poor judgment and lacked foresight, but what is the apology?

And to whom is she apologizing? The American people? For what? Creating a story that the republicans can make into a year long story?

Generally, don't you apologize for doing something wrong that you knew was wrong at the time? I'm sorry I hit my brother. I'm sorry I lied. I'm sorry I cheated on you.

I'm sorry I set up an email account on a server on my property and paid a State staffer to do it and co-mingled personal and State business on the account and then scrubbed the metadata after producing the self-selected State-business emails? Sorry about that.

Does she hope the apology will put it to rest. That is doubtful, even with the roll-out of Humorous Hillary.

Another Batch of Clinton's Emails Expected to Be Released Monday (Today)

A new batch of Hillary Clinton's State Department emails are expected to be released Monday afternoon. The democratic presidential hopeful has been under fire in the past few weeks over using a private email server while she was Secretary of State.

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