Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Technology-Enhanced Terrorism.

Post lifted from Security Watchtower

Janes Defence Weekly recently filed this report entitled Iran answers Hizbullah call for SAM systems. In addition to Russian-produced SAMs, they noted:
that Iran is also understood to have agreed to deliver its own version of the Chinese QW-1 man-portable low- to very-low-altitude SAM system - the Mithaq-1- developed by the Iranian Defence Ministry's Shahid Kazemi Industrial Complex in Tehran.
Matt Schroeder wrote a interesting piece for the Strategic Security Blog (a project of the Federation of American Scientists) entitled MANPADS for Hezbollah?

The (Janes Defence)article cites unnamed western diplomats, who also claim that Iran agreed to provide, "at a later date," several different types of Russian missiles, including the sophisticated SA-16. Assuming the information is accurate, the missile transfers are significant for several reasons. First, the missiles are a potential threat not only to Israeli military aircraft but also commercial airliners worldwide. Secondly, the transfers violate a nascent but critically important international norm against the transfer of MANPADS to non-state actors.

He goes on to note that Iran is not a member of any of the non-proliferation forums and therefore is not bound by their agreements. For a comprehensive report on this, don't miss the link at the bottom of the page and for a first-hand account of the lethality of these types of anti-aircraft weapons see this report filed by Ron Ben-Yeshai who was embedded with Israeli paratroopers in Lebanon.



When I was a young man, the most powerful people in America tended to tell themselves a lie: Our great and increasing power was an unequivocal blessing for the world. Now, I observe that Ned Lamont types tell themselves a lie that is simply an inversion of the old lie: Our even greater and still increasing power is an unmitigated source of evil in the world.

There is a big difference between Henry Luce (a great propagandist of the old lie) and George Soros (a financer of the propaganda machine of the new lie), but on one score they are very similar. Both pay themselves the compliment of thinking that the country in which they exercise the most power holds the magical key to good and evil.

There is a difference, though. The self-delusions of Henry Luce were defeated by our relative impotence in the face of human evil, ignorance, and love of violence. Some modest things were achieved. Some bad policies did more harm than good. I'm fairly sure that George Bush's overly fine rhetoric of solving our global problems by spreading freedom and democracy will suffer the same mixed fate. Some good may emerge, but without doubt some aspects of our geopolitical strategies will exacerbate rather than solve problems, and we will, in fact, make some enemies. But on the whole, our collective human investment in evil, and not our unique American military, economic, and cultural power, will defeat self-delusion. Most of our enemies will come from the traditional sources: lust for domination, envy, pride, anger, and a perverse romance with the power of death.

But what of self-delusions of the new lie, the notion that our problems-the global problems-are a result of our power and our will to use it? If George Bush tends toward idealistic overreach, the Soros fantasy that we create our own enemies will tend toward pessimistic under-reach. If our power is the source of the problem, then we need to become less powerful. If our readiness to attack aggressors creates enemies, then we get rid of them by being less ready. Or so the new lie reasons.

Therein lies the danger, for it is not just the fantasy that is vulnerable to human reality and the persistence of evil; a society that morally, politically, and culturally disarms risks going down to defeat with its self-delusion. We see this already happening in Europe.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the emergent conservative populism that has redefined national politics. I observed that the ordinary man on the street in Des Moines does not trust East Coast elites to protect and serve the common good. I made that point with reference to our culture and our fabric of civility, self-discipline, and moral standards ever more thinned by contemptuous elite patronage of transgression.

Now I make the point again, but this time with reference to the physical security of that same man on the street. Guys in pickups are not stupid. They can see that if a politician or pundit believes that American power and will to self-defense creates the most virulent forms of global evil, then that same person will advocate reducing American power and weakening our will to self-defense-in order (the same politicians and pundits will argue) to solve global problems and make America safe. The guys in pickups can also see that this is an extremely risky line of reasoning. For if wrong, a paradoxical policy of weakness for the sake of strength will leave the field open to the bad folks who refuse to be romanced by our goodwill, newfound tenderness, and winsome vulnerability. And finally, the same guys in their pickups are smart enough to know that George Soros and Ned Lamont are rich enough and powerful enough to avoid paying the social debt on their bad bet.

Excerpt from R.R. Reno



Desperate Democrat: "With a month to go before primary voters head to the polls to choose Senate nominees, Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin kicked off yesterday a weeklong effort to highlight his congressional record and vision on health care by making the mother of all campaign promises - to cure cancer. Cardin, a Democrat from Baltimore County, gathered with cancer survivors and doctors in Lutherville to detail his efforts to expand cancer screening and his plans to fight the disease. "We are going to lick cancer by 2015," Cardin told a group of 15 people at the HopeWell Cancer Support Center on Falls Road. The health care push comes as he and other candidates fight to distinguish themselves from the crowd of Democrats and Republicans vying to replace retiring incumbent Paul S. Sarbanes, the state's longest-serving senator. All are hoping to make their views and accomplishments known as voters start to pay more attention to the high-profile race".

Minimum-Markup Laws Gouge Gasoline Buyers: "Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle recently authorized gas stations to sell ethanol below the state's mandated minimum price after a station owner in Monroe defied the law and sold it for a dollar less than the required $3.10 per gallon. Good move, but the minimum-markup law should be repealed.

For more postings, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. (Mirror sites here, here, here, here, here, here and here). Other backups here


"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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