Patterico's Pontifications

7/6/2009

Obama, the Russians, and Missile Defense (Updated)

Filed under: International,Obama — DRJ @ 3:46 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

The AP reports Barack Obama and Russian President Medvedev have agreed to allow the U.S. military to use Russian land and airspace to access Afghanistan and to work together in Afghanistan [Note from DRJ: The Afghans should love that]. But the centerpiece of the meeting is an agreement to reduce nuclear weapons in a replacement to the START I treaty:

“The planned START replacement pact – the centerpiece summit agreement – calls for each side to reduce strategic warheads to a range of 1,500 to 1,675, and strategic delivery vehicles to a range of 500 to 1,100. Current limits allow a maximum of 2,200 warheads and 1,600 launch vehicles. The new treaty, as conceived, would run for 10 years. Each side would have seven years to reach reduction goals with the final three years used for verification.”

However, the parties have not agreed on Eastern European missile defense. The Americans apparently think missile defense won’t be a deal-breaker but the Russians don’t sound so sure:

“While Medvedev insisted on Monday that a replacement to the keystone START I nuclear arms reduction treaty, which expires Dec. 5, must be linked to Russian concerns about the U.S. missile defense program in Eastern Europe, it remained unclear if the Kremlin was prepared to scuttle the negotiations over that issue.

Gary Samore, Obama’s chief adviser on weapons of mass destruction and arms control, told reporters he did not believe the Russians were prepared to walk away.

“I think at the end of the day – because our missile defense does not actually pose a threat to Russia’s strategic forces – I think they’ll be prepared to go ahead without trying to extract a price on missile defense.”

How does Obama plan to resolve this stalemate?

“Hoping to ease Kremlin concerns, Obama promised that an assessment of whether the missile defense would actually work would be finished by late summer, earlier than expected, and that he would share initial U.S. thoughts with Medvedev.”

This is beyond naive, it’s foolish.

UPDATE: The Anchoress nails it.

— DRJ

136 Responses to “Obama, the Russians, and Missile Defense (Updated)”

  1. Yo, Vlad and Dmitry, that missile defense stuff we’re spending so much money on – fugghedaboutit – it don’t work too good – but we’re going to install it anyway. Youse guys don’t have any problem with that, do you?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  2. Who thinks the Russians are the world’s nuclear threat?

    bill-tb (365bd9)

  3. The Afghanistan thing is counterproductive. We don’t need it and if we come to depend on Russian acquiescence, they can shut it off anytime. Would they do that ? See Berlin crisis 1948 and 1961.

    The missile defense story is much more important. If he gives that away, we need to get control of one house of Congress fast before he does a Munich agreement on us.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  4. Obsama the village idiot, I mean community organizer. He just keeps getting dumber and dumber, like that movie with dude who keeps getting younger and younger, Benjamin Button. Only Obsama keeps getting dumber and dumber! It’s like Joe Biden is wearing off on him or something.

    J. Raymond Wright (e8d0ca)

  5. DRJ – This is beyond naive, it’s foolish.

    Not if your goal is the destruction of democracy.

    Apogee (e2dc9b)

  6. Russia is run by a pack of super powerful and extremely wealthy people. They don’t want a war… they just want aggressive negotiations.

    So, for Obama to follow Bush’s already agreed to START agreements isn’t harmful,but it isn’t going to protect America very much.

    if the USA is nuked, it’s going to come from a truck or boat or an isolated missile that missile defense would prevent. It’s going to come from an entity that has no concern for diplomacy. therefore, Iran and North Korea need to be limited instead of emboldened and we need missile defense.

    Obama dealing with the Russians by giving up our crucial defense against our real threats is, like his dealing with Honduras and Iran, obviously backwards.

    Juan (189aa5)

  7. I’m sure that if Obama is fair with them, they’ll be fair with Obama. It just takes a willingness to listen and understand their needs. Confrontation is so 2008.

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  8. I predict he’ll give the Russians the MD tech manuals and blueprints in order to get a signed agreement, if that’s what it takes.

    Chris (a24890)

  9. Congress fast before he does a Munich agreement on us.

    I was thinking of how the West stood by while the Russians swallowed Eastern Europe whole.

    Dmac (f7884d)

  10. if the USA is nuked, it’s going to come from a truck or boat or an isolated missile that missile defense would prevent.

    And how exactly would an Iranian soldier drive a truck from Iran to the U.S?

    Michael Ejercito (833607)

  11. I wouldn’t put it past our current president to be more permissive towards, or less demanding of, the Russians than of the folks running Honduras. After all, this is an ass-backwards White House.

    Mark (411533)

  12. Michael, he’d take that tunnel under boston!!!!

    Actually, that’s a question that our government should be carefully looking at. If it’s possible to smuggle millions of people and tons of drugs into our country, I assume it’s possible to get a truck across. Or a series of parts.

    But a dirty nuke in a logistical nightmare location like New Orleans port seems possible to me. Or flying to Mexico and then darting to Phoenix in a truck.

    Man, I honestly sound like a 24 script writer. But I still think this is a lot more likely than the USSR rising up to smash the USA with a thousand missiles.

    Juan (189aa5)

  13. Is that the best you’ve got?
    Were you particularly good at padding term papers?

    Larry Reilly (45e7a4)

  14. Michael, he’d take that tunnel under boston!!!!

    Actually, that’s a question that our government should be carefully looking at. If it’s possible to smuggle millions of people and tons of drugs into our country, I assume it’s possible to get a truck across. Or a series of parts.

    But a dirty nuke in a logistical nightmare location like New Orleans port seems possible to me. Or flying to Mexico and then darting to Phoenix in a truck.

    Man, I honestly sound like a 24 script writer. But I still think this is a lot more likely than the USSR rising up to smash the USA with a thousand missiles.

    If such tactics were effective, why did not the Soviets try it?

    Michael Ejercito (833607)

  15. Juan, we still have the intermediate scenario, that of a nation like Iran or North Korea threatening us with a handful of nuclear armed weapons – a scenario that can be successfully dealt with by a missile defense system.

    Larry Reilly, still incoherent.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  16. Larry Reilly,

    Is your comment for me or one of the other commenters?

    DRJ (6f3f43)

  17. Who thinks the Russians are the world’s nuclear threat?

    Nobody. Unfortunately, it seems that a whole lot of Liberals are unable to accept the idea that anyone else might be, either…

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  18. If such tactics were effective, why did not the Soviets try it?

    they did! Suitcase nukes were not meant for missiles. They were obviously deployed in the USA.

    Juan (189aa5)

  19. i‘m posting to make sure the italics tag is turned off.

    [Thanks, Juan. I turned it off, too. — DRJ]

    Juan (189aa5)

  20. Were you particularly good at padding term papers?

    Perhaps not directed at me. But I was good enough at padding term papers to cover for the rest of you folks. Oh man, was I really quite good at that.

    Juan (189aa5)

  21. If such tactics were effective, why did not the Soviets try it?

    Because they were a superpower with an actual military. They (and us) thought in terms of battalions and armor columns, not car bombs and suicide vests.

    It just wasn’t part of the mentality of a government with actual assets that could – in theor – match us.

    The thing with Iran and NoKo is that they know damned good and well that, despite the bluster, they couldn’t scratch us in a military contest.

    Not to mention those groups that have NO military… They apparently really like the idea of suicide bombings…

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  22. And how exactly would an Iranian soldier drive a truck from Iran to the U.S?

    And to answer your question: He wouldn’t.

    He would ride in a cargo container into a US Port of Entry, where we inspect the tiniest of fractions of incoming cargo. He would then get picked up, and set out for whatever city they wanted to make un-inhabitable for a long, long time.

    It’s how I would do it…

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  23. The USSR was run by a military industrial complex. They liked the Cold War. they didn’t like losing it, I suppose, but the fact that we didn’t blow eachother up in various ways doesn’t mean that the ability didn’t exist.

    All the capabilities that the USA and USSR developed to kill, beyond ICBM nukes, is breathtaking. Little cells, truck bombs, chemicals, sicknesses, Hollywood (joke, but half true).

    Thank God that’s over. Reagan better keep that Airport name!

    But trust me, Michael, the Russians did not stop at nukes on missiles.

    Juan (189aa5)

  24. Well, it was fun knowing Georgia, Ukraine, Lithuania, and Belarus while they lasted.

    JVW (a8c610)

  25. I love it when Obama supporters come in to insult everyone who thinks Obama should have taken a stand on Iran.

    they all say ‘there’s no way for Obama’s diplomacy to make a difference in Iran!!!’ and insult us.

    Now… where would we get the idea that Obama thought his diplomacy would be helpful in Iran… hmmm…. let me think… it couldn’t be a central aspect of Obama’s campaign, could it? Is there going to be another chance as awesome for taking a stand on Iran?

    Juan (189aa5)

  26. Wait, so Obama will alleviate Russian concerns by giving vital defense information to them over the viability of our missile defense system? And he has the audacity to come right out and say this?

    Dangerously naive is putting it mildly. And as I’m not in the mood to put it mildly, let me just say that this Commie law professor is going to get us killed.

    Wellsy (f1957b)

  27. love it when Obama supporters come in to insult everyone who thinks Obama should have taken a stand on Iran.

    they all say ‘there’s no way for Obama’s diplomacy to make a difference in Iran!!!’ and insult us.

    Now… where would we get the idea that Obama thought his diplomacy would be helpful in Iran… hmmm…. let me think… it couldn’t be a central aspect of Obama’s campaign, could it? Is there going to be another chance as awesome for taking a stand on Iran?

    Great point, Juan. Just goes to show how easily misled people can be when they have stars in their eyes.

    Wellsy (f1957b)

  28. But I still think this is a lot more likely than the USSR rising up to smash the USA with a thousand missiles.

    Back in the USSR?

    The U.S. NMD missile shield in the Czech Republic and Poland “is primarily intended to offer protection from single long-range missiles from Iran or North Korea, not from the nuclear arsenals of Russia or China.”

    These interceptors would not be able to catch up with Russian missiles, especially since part of the Russian arsenal would not cross Europe to reach the US. Indeed, there is good reason to believe that Russia is not so much concerned about the NMD system as it is interested in justifying its own increased defense spending.

    steve (13eb27)

  29. Cenochitonolatry.

    nk (e98769)

  30. steve, as those claims go, there’s a lot of truth in it. Russia would still be able to strike us with a great missile shield.

    but… the US has always been playing a bit coy about this. Russia would have to expend X number of missile to assure a target’s destruction. Today, that number is higher than a few years ago because missiles don’t always work. With the shield, the number gets quite a bit higher. all of the sudden Russia can only target 50 sites instead of 200. That means something.

    But this is an argument against my side.

    Juan (189aa5)

  31. Whatchoo talking about, Juan? We can land 200 ten-megaton warheads on Russia from submarine-launched MIRVs and the Russians can do the same thing to us. anytime.

    nk (e98769)

  32. nk,

    The idea is that a missile defense system would cause a certain number of missiles to not make it to their target, meaning you have to start doubling, even tripling and quadrupling the number of missiles you would normally have to fire at any one target, just to make sure ONE makes it through.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  33. Welcome to month 7 of Jimmy Carter’s 2nd term.

    Dave (in MA) (d51df8)

  34. I know that, Scott. But that’s being going on since the sixties. Nike and the ABM Treaty and we can protect Washington. And then it went to First Strike, to take out the silos, and then shove it, try first strike against our submarine-launched MIRVS. Which is where we are now, I think, since SDS was never more than an impossible fantasy Reagan used to scare the pants off the Soviet Union.

    So you’ve got 200 ten megaton warheads, from the Atlantic and the Pacific, all of them smart, all of them picking a target from New York to LA, how many you gonna shoot down as they’re coming down at 3,000 miles per hour?

    nk (e98769)

  35. *SDI* SDS was something entirely different.

    nk (e98769)

  36. And to answer your question: He wouldn’t.

    He would ride in a cargo container into a US Port of Entry, where we inspect the tiniest of fractions of incoming cargo. He would then get picked up, and set out for whatever city they wanted to make un-inhabitable for a long, long time.

    It’s how I would do it…

    And the reason the Soviets never tried this…

    Michael Ejercito (833607)

  37. Comment by Michael Ejercito — 7/6/2009 @ 8:08 pm

    See my answer at #22

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  38. NK:

    When you talk about 200 ten megaton warheads on subs either you’ve been smoking what Obama smokes or you know something no one else does. The US does not deploy a single ICBM than can loft a ten megaton warhead and the last of the Titans were retired some years ago.

    It may be that the entire sub fleet can fire this total but its doubtful since this would violate existing treaty limitations.

    You ought to check your sources again.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  39. Why are we wasting time with another SALT Treaty when the issue we ought to be concerned about is the Russian assistance to rogue states developing nuclear warheads. Our security will not be enhanced by this half assed joke.

    Its as if you were facing your opponent across a table and you both had revolvers and agreed to remove one bullet from your weapon each. How did that make you safer?

    Obama likes stupid acrtoon exercises for his lemmings. If he touches our anti missile defenses (which he has all ready reduced by the way) we are screwed.

    Anyone who’d trust the Russians is insane.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  40. I’ve updated this to link to a read-the-whole-thing post by The Anchoress.

    DRJ (6f3f43)

  41. Obama’s mindset in regards to nuclear weaponry and the Russians is very much in keeping with his mindset regarding handguns and criminality. I’m sure he’s no different from the mayors or council members in cities like DC or Chicago who have believed the answer to hold-ups and other acts of street violence was not, say, ensuring the judiciary wasn’t full of “lefty” judges, but instead ensuring the government was cracking down on the sale of and access to guns!!!

    There’s something amazingly lacking — gut-wrenchingly foolish and irresponsible — in the logic of people of the left. I really believe the part of their brain that controls common sense is defective or missing.

    Politico.com:

    During his first run for elected office, Barack Obama played a greater role than his aides now acknowledge in crafting liberal stands on gun control, the death penalty and abortion — positions that appear at odds with the more moderate image he has projected during his presidential campaign.

    Both versions of the 1996 questionnaires provide answers his presidential campaign disavows to questions about whether Obama supports capital punishment and state legislation to “ban the manufacture, sale and possession of handguns.”

    He responded simply “No” and “Yes,” respectively, to those questions on both questionnaires.

    Mark (411533)

  42. Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/6/2009 @ 8:24 pm

    Google Ohio class submarines and Trident missiles. And, in other words, bite me.

    nk (e98769)

  43. nk, as Scott says, actually, no we can’t, and neither can they. At least, not with 100% certainty. With a nuclear war plan, you have to make sure that X,Y,Z targets are taken out with some level of certainty. Even our stuff fails sometimes, and their stuff fails a lot of the time too (hell, I suspect their stuff fails most of the time).

    By adding a couple of variables, such as DARPANET, different places for each official to be located, etc etc, you make it really hard to make sure that any particular capability is eliminated. Add in the ability to swat down a couple of the missiles, and being 100% certain that any plan will result in the destruction of the US [anything] gets pretty tricky.

    Michael Ejercito, you keep saying this ‘why didn’t the Russians do that’ test to scenarios. We never got from cold war to hot war, which is why we never had to deal with whatever it is they had cooked up for us. So we really don’t know all of what they had planned for us. Do you think they Russians were not nuking us and releasing dirty nukes and bio weapons just because they couldn’t? Because if you don’t think that, then the ‘if they could, then why didn’t they’ test doesn’t make any sense.

    I repeat: the Russians had suitcase nukes, vials of germs, etc and of course, they weren’t all in Russia waiting for a war so they could spend a few weeks smuggling them here.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  44. I love this nugget of wisdom from student Obama in 1983.

    ( from the Sundial, by B. Obama, 1983):The Reagan administration’s stalling at the Geneva ta1Iks on nuclear weapons has thus already caused severe tension and could ultimately bring about a dangerous rift between the United States and Western Europe. By being intransigent, Reagan is playing directly into the Russians’ hands.

    Pure wisdom; sure nailed that one. The Russians had us right where they wanted us, alright. What a brilliant mind to see that so clearly. What a forward thinker!

    The Soviets collapsed shortly thereafter.

    I wonder if President Obama learned from his youthful misjudgments and realizes the strategy President Reagan employed and the subsequent victory of defeating an enemy-empire without firing a shot (at least in the Hot War context).

    On a practical level, does he understand the brilliance of President Reagan’s skill?

    On an ideological level, does he understand the greatness of President Reagan’s legacy – is he wise and sharp enough to learn from it? Does Obama comprehend in Heart and Mind, the struggle for Freedom and Liberty, its great Cost, and why it is so important to all People; or perhaps, does he think the Cost not worth it?

    So far, it’s not looking good.

    Pons Asinorum (a7fa22)

  45. Obama apparently sees the value of intransigence when it comes to Chrysler secured creditors and the Honduras Supreme Court.

    DRJ (6f3f43)

  46. Heh; very true, DRJ.

    Same with the fired Inspector General.

    Pons Asinorum (a7fa22)

  47. (brief threadjack)

    FWIW:
    Looks like a Trident II missile can be configured with 5 multiple W-88 warheads. Each warhead is capable of 475 kiloton or just shy of 0.5 megatons. The Ohio-class submarine can carry up to 24 Trident II missiles, so if each were armed with W-88’s then: 24 X 5 X 475 kilotons = 57,000 kilotons or 57 megatons.

    The source implies that the typical configuration for Ohio-class submarines was a mixture of W-88’s and W-76’s (at 100 kilotons each) which means typically, the total yield of all the missiles on the boat (or is it “ship”? I could never get squid talk straight) would be significantly less than 57 megatons.

    Of course I was never a squid (NTTIAWWT), so totally dependent on the source.

    (threadjack over — ‘night)

    Pons Asinorum (a7fa22)

  48. NK # 43

    You are a dullard. Did you both to read or can you read? Do you understand how large a 10 megaton warhead is? Do you not grasp that it is a bomber delivered weapon and the Triton missile can carry a single 3 megaton warhead or 5 independent warheads each of less than 100 kilotons.

    Now for your benefit NK, there are 1,000 kilotons in one megaton. Can you comprhend that? Or did you flunk math.

    Further if you look at the Ohio class boomer there are 24 ICBMs. Or a total of 12 megatons total.

    So you’re out by a factor of about 20. Not bad so I assume you’re a McDonald’s employee and can’t count or can’t count or a junior high school drop out who can’t read.

    Which is it. By the way I relayed your kind invitation to Barney Frank who said that he is on a first name basis with you.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  49. #45

    Great Post.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  50. The Triton missile program was never developed, and therefore there aren’t any Triton missiles and they each have 1.21 gigatons of yield.

    Tridents are a different matter, but I’m kinda amused at the idea that wikipedia is going to have useful information about our most secretive and deadly weapons. We are 100% certain that we have absolutely no idea quite how powerful our stuff is. And we don’t want to find out.

    Juan, who is an insomniac (bd4b30)

  51. Anyone who believes that the Russians will only harbor benign intentions towards the US in the future need only look to their incredibly evil KGB – style poisonings of the Ukrainian President and the former KGB agent in Britain. No one with any serious experience regarding the Russian security apparatus questions either of these events as anything out of the ordinary. Look at the vast numbers of Russian journalists murdered in cold blood over the past decade, and all because they were asking questions that made some of the powerful a little uncomfortable. Putin has also shut down the last of the independent TV networks there; it’s all state – sponsored crap from now on, in all mediums. I could go on and detail their vast cyber – crime operations sponsored by the KGB, deployed most effectively during their war with Georgia and also interference in the Baltic states of Lithuania and Estonia in the recent past. There also have been rumors that KGB agents have been mapping out the vulnerabilities regarding our electrical grids and cell phone towers, all in the service of possible widespread disruption to our communications grid via cyber warfare tactics. Ignore the obvious threats here at your own risk.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  52. Thomas J – Why are you a homophobe?

    JD (611195)

  53. BTW, at the risk of over – emphasizing my point, many of the most virulent computer viruses that have spread over the internet during the past 10 years have been traced to vast cyber – gangs operating out of Russia. Many have also been discovered to not only have the tacit support of the KGB, but in some cases have been virtual arms as well, in terms of direct funding and having KGB personnel working in their companies.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  54. Thought of the Day: Obama and the Democratic Congress are doing to this country what Michael Jackson did to his face.

    Joe (17aeff)

  55. #51 — Comment by Juan, who is an insomniac — 7/7/2009 @ 12:27 am

    Tridents are a different matter, but I’m kinda amused at the idea that wikipedia is going to have useful information about our most secretive and deadly weapons.

    They do not, but even it was listed, using Wikipedia as a source is tacky (that is why I did not use it as a source in my link above, and typically avoid it in general).

    We are 100% certain that we have absolutely no idea quite how powerful our stuff is.

    The numbers regarding yield and missile capacity are not classified. That makes logical sense because the whole purpose of having them is to let the “other side” understand just how powerful they are. The deterrent loses effectiveness if the yield is speculative. For example, if I say “I have a really big gun” versus “I have a .357 with hollow points”, which deterrent is more serious.

    Indeed, the Center of Defense Organization has those numbers (click on link in #48). Or more specifically, they gather information from a variety of sources. In this instance they used:
    Jane’s Information Group publications — “Strategic Weapon Systems, Fighting Ships, Naval Weapon Systems”
    International Institute for Strategic Studies’– “Military Balance 1995-6″

    Pons Asinorum (a7fa22)

  56. Thank you, JD, but Thomas Jackson is a class of commenter all in his own self. Big tent.

    nk (e98769)

  57. Comment by Pons Asinorum — 7/7/2009 @ 8:30 am

    I dunno. There was a snippet, back in my TV-watching days, about Russia’s MIRV projecting missile, on truck trailers always on the move through Russian and Siberian forests (Atanas?), but darn if I can find it on the internet.

    nk (e98769)

  58. Pons Asinorum at 48 – And if you were a squid all you would be able to say would be, “I can niether confirm or deny the presence of nuclear warheads on any vessel of the US Navy.”
    That was the story my brother always gave me, even while we were touring a Trident sub and looking at the radioactivity warning stickers on the missle tubes.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  59. Comment by Have Blue — 7/7/2009 @ 8:58 am

    Too funny. You gotta love the military.

    Pons Asinorum (a7fa22)

  60. Comment by Have Blue — 7/7/2009 @ 8:58 am

    They were concerned that the missiles might be contaminated by stray radiation from the ship’s power-plant.

    AD - RtR/OS! (17371b)

  61. I think we ought to call him “Wrong Way Obama”. He does the opposite of right, Good, and true.

    PCD (02f8c1)

  62. […] individual carbon output, or the madness of Al Gore. They wouldn’t have to wonder why Obama is making a big show of Missile Defense with Russia, while underwhelming Medvedev, or mention Putin’s sly rebuke to them. They could ignore the […]

    The Anchoress — A First Things Blog (f2568a)

  63. I like that comment above, about how Barcky knows so many things that are just wrong.

    JD (14288f)

  64. Pons, I have no evidence things are any different than the DOD claims, and they perhaps aren’t wildly beyond wikipedia’s knowledge… but I also think it would be pretty wild if the US Military did not understate its capabilities in an area like this. That’s their standard MO, and has been for quite a long time. The Russians tend to overstate what they have and the US tends to understate.

    As far as deterrent value, I think there is a balance between making clear you have a credible capability, and not making clear every facet of that capability. Your example is the guy who says he’s got a .357 JHP. A smart guy might want his neighbors to know he has a gun in general, but not how many and how powerful and in which locations. I mean, do you want the bad guys to know where you keep your ammo crate?

    Interesting topic, but thankfully getting a bit obsolete. I’m just not worried about the USSR.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  65. This is beyond naive, it’s foolish. It’s a smart negotiating tactic. These systems are chips in a gam and this particular system is not necessary and far too costly. But using a proposed deployment in Eastern Europe of a still theoretical missile system that clearly annoys the Russians as leverage to pressure them to deal with, say, Iran on nuclear issues is a smart strategy, not unlike Reagan using ‘Star Wars’ research as a bargaining ploy in the 1980’s.

    DCSCA (9d1bb3)

  66. How about that, DuckCrap actually says that GWB embarked on smart diplomacy/strategery re Poland & missile defense.
    Where did that come from?

    AD - RtR/OS! (17371b)

  67. DCSCA, Reagan never bargained with the Strategic Defense plan. It was never on the table. When the Soviets accepted that fact it caused them to spend more than they had and collapsed. That is an oversimplification but it is what happened. Reagan did not back down at all. You don’t trade defense, you bolster it. Obama has no desire to strengthen this nation. His whole ploy is to weaken it so he can employ Saul Alinky’s evil plan. Obama follows the instruction left by Alinsky to the letter. It will be his downfall.

    Zelsdorf Ragshaft III (57cae1)

  68. DCSCA:

    These systems are chips in a gam and this particular system is not necessary and far too costly

    How do you know the system is “not necessary and far too costly”? Are you speaking for the Pentagon or the Democratic Party (“We reject Republican plans … to construct an unproven, expensive, and ill-conceived missile defense system that would plunge us into a new arms race.”)

    DRJ (6f3f43)

  69. #68- President Obama’s strategy in wanting to trade away something that will mostly likely be cancelled anyway as unnecessary and costly is a smart move. Dubya’s proposal of the costly, wasteful boondoggle in the first place was not. It’s just another example of President Obama making lemonade out of one of Dubya’s lemons.

    DCSCA (9d1bb3)

  70. something that will mostly likely be cancelled anyway as unnecessary and costly

    DCSCA knows this because von Braun told him about it while lounging around the dorm.

    Besides, those missile defenses make a funny noise. It sounds like “tapocketa, tapocketa, tapocketa.”

    Mike K (2cf494)

  71. Clinton thought fighting terrorism wasn’t always necessary either, DCSCA. It’s his fault, to some large extent, that 9/11 happened. that cost us aq lot more than our SDI efforts over the years. Bush spent a ton on this missile shield and many other ‘keep us safe’ initiatives, and the democrats claim they didn’t protect us… but you can’t prove a negative. We don’t really know how many lives the Iraq war saved, for example.

    How many rogue states beyond Libya gave up their nuclear missile efforts because they are a waste of their efforts? how many will restart if we don’t have our shield?

    Fact is, since Harry Truman, the democrats are pretty much always wrong when it comes to foreign policy. They just don’t get it. Obama’s recent writings on Russia prove we’ve got the least knowledgeable president in US history… someone whose promised diplomacy has failed in Iran and Honduras to yield gains.

    that alone is a big reason to pause at anything a Democrat claims regarding something as major as preventing a nuclear attack.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  72. #53

    JD

    Ever been to Fire Island or Block Island?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  73. NK

    Once again your ignorance and arrogance is on dsplay. You are in your own class as anyone reviewing our comments can discern. But your immaturity and infantilism is unique. You’re facts and knowledge aren’t in dispute, only your education.

    Res ipsa loquitur.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  74. Juan:

    Most of the capabilities of all strategic and theater nuclear delivery systems were released during the SALT and follow on talks during the 90s. Payloads, ranges were pretty well established as well as MIRV capabilities. What remains classified are CEP radius, decoy and defensive measures and detection capabilities. Unfortunately its hard to tell how much was removed from Los Almamos during the Clinton regime. Its a pretty good bet that most warheads data is in the hands of the East block. There are various sources where most strategic data can be found including satelittle imagery and inventories.

    The problem isn’t these but breakthrough technologies that could alter the balance of power. Stealth was one such technology, airborne lasers could be another.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  75. Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/7/2009 @ 2:02 pm

    So your “big tent” as they say, it’s one of those two-man pup-tent types, eh? Is there anyone here you consider above contempt?

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  76. Thank you, too, Stashiu, but Thomas is one of those people Mark Twain described as speaking English on the Continental plan. He speaks it but he does not understand it. He’s actually amusing, to me. I even have one of his quotes on my sidebar. It’s the one attributed to “Some idiot”.

    nk (e98769)

  77. But your immaturity and infantilism is unique.

    You’re new here, yes? And yet this classic case of projection is duly noted, all the same. Please keep it up, you’re amusing the hell out of us. And BTW, anyone using Latin to impress others here is immediately classified as an Ipso facto Poncey – Boy, Pseudo – Intellectual, Pompous Git, Grade – A Douchebag. Wear your new moniker with pride!

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  78. You’re facts and knowledge aren’t in dispute, only your education.

    The unintentional humor of this sentence is overwhelming.

    Steverino (69d941)

  79. We’re arguing over the trivia of our nuclear arsenal. Anyone who really knows isn’t going to say anything on the topic, anyway. It feels like a very macho little topic of little meaning.

    We have the ability to blow up 3 countries with 18 Tridents? Well who cares? Under what circumstance would Obama ever use that capability? Perhaps if those 3 countries had free elections (joke).

    Juan (bd4b30)

  80. Juan, Madeline Halfbright proved that you are wrong about Clinton not taking terrorism seriously. She told an interviewer that, of course they took terrorism seriously. She could recall a meeting almost every week on the subject.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  81. I concede!

    Juan (bd4b30)

  82. They “took a meeting”…
    W actually did something.
    You might not care for what he did, but he removed a constant irritant from the Middle East, who – like a fly – all he did was eat, $hit, and bother people, and allowed Democracy of some form to take in an additional 60 million adherents.

    AD - RtR/OS! (17371b)

  83. […] quo is more macho than its alternatives doesn’t mean it’s worth defending. It is not naïve to inform the Russians that there are still a couple of kinks in our missile defense system, because even if it ever successfully shot down anything, it is not designed to deter the Russians […]

    Best to only ever fight the wars you already won. « The Edge of the American West (d9a4c0)

  84. Poor NK upset because his inadequacies were demonstrated and he just can’t admit his errors.

    Res ipsa loquitur.

    And for your fellow who seem bound to follow you to those stygian depths of ignorance I’ve always been employed to produce results rather than be part of a hive mentality. So keep the insipid caterwauling crescendos in defense of ignorance up.

    They only demonstrate the collective cluelessness that is obvious to the casual observer.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  85. # 80 Stevie:

    Is it merely a urban legend that if a Leftwingnut troll bites you, you become one?

    Thanks for demonstrating your grasp of the situation. It was amusing.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  86. #79
    Dmac:

    Liz Trotter uunderstudy speaks!

    Was it tough finding someone to explain it to you?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  87. # 77: Stashiu:

    As predicted in the book of relevation. As Gandhi said, “I do believe that where there is a choice only between cowardise and violence, I would advise violence.”

    As you have demonstrated being infantile, indolent, and inspid isn’t a way to live.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  88. Do you really want to go there Thomas? I wouldn’t advise it.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  89. I see that NK is venerated for his catatonic cud chewing capacity for arrogance combined with an unlimited talent for self delusion equalled only by his belief in his own omnipetence is defended by his sock puppets in defference to fact.

    Sorry if I have offended the fantasyland types.

    I admit NK is right.

    Ohio clkass subs are armed with 24 10 megaton warhead.

    Even if would place us in violation of the SALT accords that we have observed for over a decade.
    Even if this is an impossibility.
    Even if a casual look at Jane’s reveals this is rank nonsense.

    We must not resist the Borg.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  90. #90:

    Pot meet kettle.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  91. Pot meet kettle.
    Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/7/2009 @ 9:01 pm

    If you’re implying that I attacked you first, think again. My point was pretty clear that you’re not really on board with anyone here and attacking everybody in sight. Lighten up Francis.

    Now, if you really want to get personal with me, good luck with that. Like I said already, I wouldn’t advise it.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  92. Is it merely a urban legend that if a Leftwingnut troll bites you, you become one?

    Thanks for demonstrating your grasp of the situation. It was amusing.

    I have no idea about urban legends, but if you’re going to question someone’s education in the same sentence wherein you use your instead of you’re, then I will point and laugh at you.

    Don’t assume that you know anything about me, except that maybe I know the difference between a possessive pronoun and a contraction, where you likely do not.

    Steverino (1b3695)

  93. Res ipsa loquitur.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  94. Don’t assume that you know anything about me, except that maybe I know the difference between a possessive pronoun and a contraction, where you likely do not.
    Comment by Steverino — 7/7/2009 @ 9:08 pm

    I was more amused by the disconnect between questioning the education, but not disputing the facts or knowledge, the product of that education.

    You’re facts and knowledge aren’t in dispute, only your education.
    Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/7/2009 @ 2:02 pm

    Priceless.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  95. 93

    Ditto.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  96. Stevie:

    I was always taught you can tell the idot at a budget meeting when you found someone argiung where a comma should be when the issue is a 3 billion dollar shortfall.

    I’d love to play poker with you. As far as educational accomplishments go I’m afraid I am probably not familiar with the community college you graduated from.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  97. Ditto.
    Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/7/2009 @ 9:14 pm

    Which means what? I didn’t attack you, yet you attacked me and several others. If you’ve got something to say, say it. You’ve had plenty of venom to spare the last couple of days, now you’re down to single-word ambiguities? Sad.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  98. Resipsa loquitur. Still in that two man tent?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  99. Get a room, you two.

    No really, Thomas… there’s a lot of places to antagonize and vent, but it’s just out of place here. No one even really cares who ‘wins’ or ‘loses’ the argument. It’s just not important.

    I bet, if you changed nicks and returned with a mellow attitude, no one would give you any grief about it. I know that’s ‘against the rules’, so just start over in a new thread.

    Personally, I don’t have any problem with latin or with you wanting to go against the conformist flows wherever you see them. I just think the tone is out of place… and that’s coming from me… I barely ever fit in here.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  100. Resipsa loquitur. Still in that two man tent?
    Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/7/2009 @ 9:20 pm

    You’re fond of that phrase, yet apparently don’t understand it well. Figures.

    You also don’t understand the tent reference I guess, which also figures. I would venture my tent here is much bigger than yours… maybe now you’ll get a clue, but I doubt it. You’re too interested in attacking everyone around you. Internet tough guy. We’ve seen dozens of your type come and go here, nothing special about it. Just filled with anger and faux intelligence. Dismissible.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  101. BILLY MAYS HERE WITH TENT EXTENDERZ 860

    YOU KNOW IT’S WORKING BECAUSE YOU HAVE MORE FRIENDS. BUT WAIT! I’M NOT DONE. IFYOUORDERNOW, I’LL THROWN IN LOQUITERS. THEY SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES WITH RES IPSA ACTION. JUSTADDPROCESSING.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  102. I was always taught you can tell the idot at a budget meeting when you found someone argiung where a comma should be when the issue is a 3 billion dollar shortfall.

    I’d love to play poker with you. As far as educational accomplishments go I’m afraid I am probably not familiar with the community college you graduated from.

    First of all, it’s “idiot”, you idiot. Second, I will not get into a pissing contest of bona fides with you. I’ve seen enough of your posts here to know you are rude, insulting, and shoot your mouth off without understanding the facts.

    I don’t take you seriously, TJ, and it appears that the other regulars here hold you in even lower regards.

    Steverino (1b3695)

  103. #102

    Pot meet kettle. How is your two man tent there. Modern platitudes blostered by a faithin your ego. Touching.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  104. Juan:

    Apparently some people have a double standard. If you review the comments an individual took umbridge that he might check his facts before posting what was clearly nonsense. Apparently this is bad form here. Its also apparently even worse form to defend oneself when insulted.
    I haven’t reached this point in life to be lectured to by some of the commenters here who believe ignorance shouldn’t be corrected and bad manners should never, never be called to task. I also don’t relish a certain species threatening me and forgetting his insults until they are tossed back in his face. Let him cool it. I didn’t start this.
    Facts, evidence, and civilized discourse do carry great weight. Dealing with infants who believe “bite me” is an intelligent retort deserves an appropriate response. To this infant’s defenders who apparently were raised to believe their self esteem trumps the facts, reality or the truth I have only pity and disdain.

    How many of these wonders have spent time in foreign affairs, overseas, or in intelligence? How many have a background in the military? I am used to sanctimony and self preening, but do not care for the arrogance and egos that appear to rival Idaho in size.

    If they care to refrute my statement fine, but as I have noted elsewhere in context with a different subject, when you cannot be faulted on the facts, evidence or logic, the trolls fling feeces. Its all they can do. I just wonder these folks believe Rosie O’Donnell, Liz Trotter, Helen Thomas, and Joy Behar are such wonderful a suitable role models.

    I didn’t start this but I won’t back down from people who believe Google and Wiki substitue for knowledge.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  105. Hmm… repetitive phrases, baseless insults, pretentious, clueless, contempt for everybody else, poor grammar and spelling… seems familiar somehow.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  106. And the context for “bite me” is a bit different than what you imply, but that’s not unusual for you is it? You might also try searching the site a bit further back for my background instead of single comments taken out of context. It will help you avoid making foolish assumptions. Now, please show me where I started insulting you, toss it back in my face, because I don’t recall it. I do know that I’ve never threatened anyone here so that was a flat-out lie.

    You started this days ago and people are getting tired of it. Again, lighten up Francis. You are not the “Single and Only Holder of Truth!” around here. Still, I have this strong sense of deja vu. Strange.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  107. He’s nuts.
    Comment by [nk], Attorney at Law — 7/8/2009 @ 12:17 am

    Heh. Maybe that’s it. 😉

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  108. Thomas has been around here for a while. I first noticed him when he did not like my explanation, to MD in Philly, why a jury must convict or acquit according to the statute and the jury instructions. He’s nuts.

    [nk], Attorney at Law (e98769)

  109. Thomas, I guess I have a sense of humor about the internet.

    Just figure out what it is you want to get out of it. I like reading and discussing when I need a break. I’m not really trying to convince anyone to join a cause so much as I am letting the discussion refine my POV. If you’re enjoying this kind of back and forth with the board, that’s not a problem for me… it just didn’t look like you were enjoying yourself.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  110. Was it tough finding someone to explain it to you?

    I don’t know – is it difficult speaking whilst you suckle your gonads at the same time?

    Resipsa loquitur

    So sayeth the Poncey Poofter.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  111. I am used to sanctimony and self preening

    …except when I look in the mirror each morning, braying to my genuflection.

    I just wonder these folks believe Rosie O’Donnell, Liz Trotter, Helen Thomas, and Joy Behar are such wonderful

    Tommy – Boy likes him some strawmen.

    How many of these wonders have spent time in foreign affairs, overseas, or in intelligence?

    Actually, one of the commenters here recently returned from active duty, you fatuous Git.

    Still in that two man tent?

    As Stashiu noted, you completely missed the reference in the first place – care to double down on that ginormous intellect again? Please tell us what that expression represents, and who coined it initially?

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  112. I hate it when I am soooooo right about yet another commenter, but Thomas Jackson is a poofter lovin’ git, a fact I pointed out some time ago.

    JD (985829)

  113. I haven’t reached this point in life to be lectured to by some of the commenters here who believe ignorance shouldn’t be corrected and bad manners should never, never be called to task.

    That’s rich! The minute someone else corrects you on your ignorance and bad manners, you call him names and trot out all manner of insults.

    Try removing the beam from your own eye before you prate on about how you insist on removing the motes from the eyes of others.

    Steverino (69d941)

  114. What point in life have we reached when we’re lecturing others on comment sections of blogs we don’t even own, but we aren’t willing to be lectured for being rude?

    I’d rather be a gentleman and have no idea how many water balloons a submarine can throw at dolphins than be a jerk and know all about the secret silly string.

    What is going on with this site over the last couple of days? I think it’s Palin.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  115. Just how often is Thomas Jackson going to keep repeating a latin phrase he does not actually understand?

    SPQR (72771e)

  116. Just how often is Thomas Jackson going to keep repeating a latin phrase he does not actually understand?

    ad nauseam, SPQR.

    Steverino (69d941)

  117. LOL, Steverino.

    SPQR (72771e)

  118. Is that res ipsa idiota ?

    JD (059b59)

  119. More like Ascendo tuum , JD.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  120. What is going on with this site over the last couple of days? I think it’s Palin

    That’s one probable factor, but we usually see this parade of asshats and assorted asspulls whenever teh One’s really screwing up badly – which at the present rate means we’ll be having daily troll infestations for the foreseeable future. For example, you could look up the archives from last Summer to the election, when the astroturfing from assorted Moby’s and the other usual degenerates were truly of Homeric proportions.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  121. Gramen artificiosum odi.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  122. Dmac, that’s a good explanation for things in general. But TJ here fancies himself to be more conservative than everyone else. I doubt he’s a Moby, I think he’s sincerely a conservative.

    But he’s been wrong about more than a few things, and doesn’t respond well to criticism.

    Steverino (69d941)

  123. Dmac is simply restating JD’s First Rule of Trolls.

    JD (2ff242)

  124. True dat.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  125. I realize you can’t address the issues but feel and sock puppets projecting your failures and flaws serves to justify your case. Clearly you can’t focus, have limited education, have failed in your choosen careers, and lack the ability to grasp any issue. I would not question your sanity because your comments reveal your emotion maturity and stability. Clearly you still feel compelled to justify your braying.

    Continue. It goes well with your tinfoil hats. So repeat your how brillant you are, just remember to ask “do you want fries with that?” Its about the best you can ever hope for.

    The reason that JD, Stassy, NK, and Dmac seem so infantile is due to their perchant for Brazilian wax jobs. This would make it hard to focus.

    Trolls fling feeces when they can’t address the issues.

    So do protest how brillant you are. What dullards. Especially Stassie a real cretin who appears to have earned his PhD in Tolkein mythology as it applies to Oyster Surprise.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  126. Am I Stassy or Stassie now?

    Let’s see:
    1. I threatened you.
    2. I have a limited education.
    3. I have failed in my career.
    4. I am an infant and/or infantile.
    5. I wear a tinfoil hat.
    6. I am a sockpuppet.
    7. I am a troll.
    8. All I can hope for is to work fast-food.
    9. I’m a cretin.

    Yes, Thomas… this is such a wise course for you to follow. Please let me know if I missed anything.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  127. No Stassie I believe you and your sock puppets have demonstrated both your ignorance and stupidity enough to demonstrate that if you can’t be God that at least you can be a telemarketer.

    So much fun dealing with people who believe that they will be beamed up to the spaceship following the comet.

    Please continue. Ad hominem serial vomiting by you and your friends amuses me.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  128. The irony and lack of insight is amazing.

    Show some ad hominem from me towards you. Plus, that you can even consider I’m a sockpuppet or would use sockpuppets is really hilarious.

    This is truly unwise on your part Thomas. Just sayin’

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  129. From the other thread:

    Ace has apologized for his behavior regarding this matter which demonstrates he is a bigger man than most.
    Comment by Thomas Jackson — 7/8/2009 @ 11:57 pm

    Bigger than you anyway. Maybe you should review this thread objectively before you address anything to me in the future. Your choice of course.

    Stashiu3 (3fc50f)

  130. Seriously, Stashiu, do not take Thomas seriously. Just enjoy his nuttiness.

    Yes, Thomas, you are totally and absolutely right. Defense Secretary [David] Gates [of the musical group Bread] took me of a tour of all our nuclear facilities and CIA Director [Lou] Panetta [who is also the manager for the Chicago Cubs] explained to me that there’s no way the Russians have ten-megaton warheads in a MIRV missile. They said it was not necessary to give you the same tour, since it was part of your education as a receptionist in our overseas consulates.

    nk (57f631)

  131. Stassie:
    Anything you say reminds me of why we have lunatic asylums. The irony of your comments reminds me of the definition of bombast.

    When you understand English and can write coherently me let us know. Reading your comments always amuses me. I didn’t realize one could torture any language so.

    As I said it takes a big man to apologize rather than project little man. How’s your two man tent doing, just you and JD?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  132. NK:

    I see the founding member of the insane clown posse is here.

    I realize honesty and reality aren’t exactly your ilngua fanca NK. For someone who has problems deciding whether he’s a lawyer or doctor, well it is understandable that you aren’t exactly the sharpest knife in the drawer, when you you are confronted with all those tough problemws flipping those burgers.

    Its laughable that you can’t even grasp what is written. Why don’t you review the comments and inform the readers again who claimed the Russians have missiles that can carry 10 megaton warheads and who claimed American subs can fire such warheads.

    But such a repugnant disregard of reality only serves to distinguish you as one of the trolls who is detached from reality more and more. Relax, you are in good company with the other Minions of the Minsistry of Truth faction.

    Congratulations on your tour. Now take your meds and you can write about your coronation as the Emperor of France sometime. You can make Stassie the Duke of Burgendy while you’re at it.

    If I were you I do as Stassie does and take a healthy dose of lithium daily.

    NK it must be hard being as well educated, experienced, and brillant as you. I am in awe.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)


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