Archive for the 'Department of Defense' Category



The Military Establishment Is An Embarrassment To Itself

BY Herschel Smith
23 hours, 46 minutes ago

The Federalist.

Four military officers who describe themselves as “researchers” at the Army’s highly respected Cyber Institute have published an article that adds to the growing concern about the ongoing politicization of the military. Published by the military’s National Defense University (NDU), their article purports to analyze the dangers of misinformation and disinformation and to advise the Biden administration about how to counter it.

The article’s authors all are military officers and at least two are professors at West Point. They say their article “is written in response to the Capitol insurrection.”

[ … ]

The Cyber Center authors’ thesis is that the “insurrection” at the Capitol building on Jan. 6 was a mortal danger to the country that was caused by disinformation, namely the idea that the 2020 presidential election was rigged or stolen. The “insurrection” spawned by this alleged disinformation then becomes the justification for the authors’ proposed government censorship (although they eschew the term) of free speech.

Uh huh.

What happened that ridiculous day wasn’t an insurrection.  They will witness an insurrection if they attempt to confiscate firearms.

I have a suggestion.  Perhaps these “professors” could focus on fire and maneuver warfare and go get a combat action ribbon (or whatever the Army calls that).  Otherwise, they’re just wasting time.

As for the Marine Corps, what was once a respected institution now allows females into the infantry officer’s course at Quantico, and also allows females into the infantry battalions.

This piece at business insider discusses the U.S. Marines versus the Royal Marines, and why the USMC lost in mock battles recently to the Royal Marines.

They lost because they no longer know who they are.  They began to change right before my youngest son got out (which was the reason for his having left), and he never looked back.  Today they don’t know whether they are “Soldiers of the Sea,” an Expeditionary Fighting Force, cyber warriors, or what.

They got too heavy, and experimented with the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, an idiotic idea if I’ve ever heard one.  I recommended at the time (beginning more than a decade ago) that the Marine Corps scale down the size of the force, focus more on pay, retention, specialized training, and air and sea insertion for special operations.

They have too many stupid people in the USMC today, and thus none of that advice obtained.  So any comparison between the USMC and Royal Marines suffers from the USMC not knowing who they are or want to be, wanting to be too big and too heavy, treating its Marines like crap, being [stupidly] proud of the fact that they get the short end of the stick on training dollars from the DoD, and recruiting the wrong sort of people.

Among the “wrong sort of people” are females who believe they can do anything a male can do.

As for USMA at West Point, they were lost a very long time ago.  If I were hiring today, I wouldn’t be any more impressed at a degree from the USMA than my local 2-year community college.

Joe Biden’s Hatred Of Veterans

BY Herschel Smith
1 week ago

Via Ammoland, this report.

The Biden administration is rolling out a new initiative aimed at reducing suicides by gun and combating the significant increases in suicides by members of the military and veterans.

The White House is announcing the new plan on Tuesday, which officials say is an unprecedented focus by the federal government on reducing the risk of suicide through awareness and training campaigns and new regulations to increase the availability of gun storage products.

The plan calls for federal agencies, including the Defense Department, Homeland Security, the Justice Department, Health and Human Services, Veterans Affairs and the Department of Transportation’s emergency medical services office to create public awareness campaigns to encourage safer storage of guns and training for counselors, crisis responders and others.

The effort also includes the Justice Department finalizing a rule that was first proposed in 2016 and would require stores that sell firearms to also offer secure gun storage and safety devices, the White House said.

John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, commended the administration’s efforts on gun storage, saying they were “blazing a new path” to keep guns away from people who could be a danger to themselves.

In 2019, firearms were the most common method used in suicide deaths in the United States, accounting for nearly 24,000 deaths, or a little over half of all suicide deaths, according to federal health statistics. Experts say many people who take their lives using guns typically have quick access to firearms and have tended to be gun owners or their family members.

As part of the plan, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives will distribute a guide for firearms dealers that spells out both safety steps that are required under the law and additional steps the federal government recommends. The guide will also detail the Justice Department’s focus on prosecuting gun crimes and violations of federal firearms laws.

The administration said ATF would also “seek to revoke the licenses of dealers the first time that they violate federal law,” with limited exceptions for “extraordinary circumstances.” Those violations would include selling guns to someone who can’t legally own them, failing to run a background check, falsifying federal records or refusing to cooperate in required ATF inspections.

The federal government will also create maps to help people find places to safely store guns outside of their homes, officials said. Officials will also expand efforts within the Department of Veterans Affairs focused on suicide prevention and safety planning, along with training for family members of people who could be at higher risk for suicide, administration officials said.

The Department of Defense’s annual calendar year suicide report released in September showed that 580 military personnel, including 384 active duty service members, died by suicide in 2020. The suicide rate among active duty service members has statistically increased since 2015, the report said. There’s been no statistical change for reservists and National Guard members during the same timeframe, according to the report.

What’s not mentioned in this article is how pressure will be brought to bear on the VA to ensure that veterans don’t have access to firearms.  If a veteran has been diagnosed with PTSD, he is already presumably on the NICS list as a prohibited individual.

This just makes things harder for the veteran.  A firearm for self defense is useless for self defense when it’s not within reach.  Besides, if Biden cared about the physical and mental health of veterans, he wouldn’t be pushing a vaccine mandate on the defense department.  None of this has anything to do with care for the veteran.  It’s about disarmament.

To be sure, suicide is awful, but suicide doesn’t obviate the right and duty of self defense among those who are not predispositioned to this awful thing.

Army Recruits Drill With Masks On While Back Female Drill Instructor Leads A Chant About MLK

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 2 weeks ago

Here.

Lord help us if we ever get into a near-peer conflict.

The U.S. military is done.  Finished.  Kaput.  It is no more.  There is nothing left of it.  It is a hollowed out shell.

UPDATE: NC Renegade posted yesterday.  I missed that.

The State Department Violates OPSEC Concerning Nuclear Weapons

BY Herschel Smith
2 months ago

News.

In a reversal of Trump administration policy, the State Department on Tuesday disclosed the number of nuclear weapons in the U.S. stockpile. It said this will aid global efforts to control the spread of such weapons.

The number of U.S. weapons, including those in active status as well as those in long-term storage, stood at 3,750 as of September 2020, the department said. That is down from 3,805 a year earlier and 3,785 in 2018.

As recently as 2003, the U.S. nuclear weapon total was slightly above 10,000. It peaked at 31,255 in 1967.

The last time the U.S. government released its stockpile number was in March 2018, when it said the total was 3,822 as of September 2017. That was early in the Trump administration, which subsequently kept updated numbers secret and denied a request by the Federation of American Scientists to declassified them.

[ … ]

At the Conference on Disarmament last February, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “President Biden has made it clear: the U.S. has a national security imperative and a moral responsibility to reduce and eventually eliminate the threat posed by weapons of mass destruction.”

Find any infographic depiction of the number of deaths from conventional war through the centuries, and see where the graphic bottoms out to see the effects for peace brought about by nuclear weapons.  Nuclear weapons are the greatest contributor to world peace in human history.

But Biden and his ilk believe that the entire world is populated by folks with master’s degrees in social work from Ivy League schools who want nothing more than world peace, and are willing to divulge sensitive information about U.S. defense capabilities in order to join the club.

This follows a pattern of divulging OPSEC information, one of which I called out concerning Biden’s plan to share sensitive naval nuclear technology with Australia, whose commitment to protecting that technology will live no longer than the current administration.

It does no good to claim that it was all approve by Biden.  The State Department should not have done that, and Biden should not have approved it.

So after watching the debacle in Afghanistan, and then telling the world the status of our most important defensive capabilities, if you were actively trying to destroy the defense capabilities of America, what would you do any different than the administration?

By the way, a well connected source with the Navy SEALs tells me that morale among SEALs has tanked.  It couldn’t get much worse.

RFID Tags On Weapons?

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 1 week ago

Seriously?

Determined to keep track of their guns, some U.S. military units have turned to a technology that could let enemies detect troops on the battlefield, The Associated Press has found.

The rollout on Army and Air Force bases continues even though the Department of Defense itself describes putting the technology in firearms as a “significant” security risk.

The Marines have rejected radio frequency identification technology in weapons for that very reason, and the Navy said this week that it was halting its own dalliance.

RFID, as the technology is known, is infused throughout daily civilian life. Thin RFID tags help drivers zip through toll booths, hospitals locate tools and supermarkets track their stock. Tags are in some identity documents, airline baggage tags and even amusement park wristbands.

When embedded in military guns, RFID tags can trim hours off time-intensive tasks, such as weapon counts and distribution. Outside the armory, however, the same silent, invisible signals that help automate inventory checks could become an unwanted tracking beacon.

The AP scrutinized how the U.S. armed services use technology to keep closer control of their firearms as part of an investigation into stolen and missing military guns — some of which have been used in street violence. The examination included new field tests that demonstrated some of the security issues RFID presents.

The field tests showed how tags inside weapons can be quickly copied, giving would-be thieves in gun rooms and armories a new advantage.

And, more crucially, that even low-tech enemies could identify U.S. troops at distances far greater than advertised by contractors who install the systems.

Which is why a spokesman for the Department of Defense said its policymakers oppose embedding tags in firearms except in limited, very specific cases, such as guns that are used only at a firing range — not in combat or to guard bases.

“It would pose a significant operations security risk in the field, allowing an adversary to easily identify DOD personnel operating locations and potentially even their identity,” Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Uriah Orland told AP.

Spokespeople at the headquarters of the Air Force and Army said they did not know how many units have converted their armories.

AP found five Air Force bases that have operated at least one RFID armory, and one more that plans a retrofit. Executives at military contracting companies said many more units have sought proposals.

A Florida-based Army Green Berets unit, the 7th Special Forces Group, confirmed it uses the technology in “a few” arms rooms. Special forces soldiers can take tagged weapons into the field, said Maj. Dan Lessard, a special forces spokesman. A separate pilot project at Fort Bragg, the sprawling Army base in North Carolina, was suspended due to COVID-19.

The Navy told AP one armory on a base up the coast from Los Angeles was using RFID for inventory. Then this week, after extended questioning, spokesman Lt. Lewis Aldridge abruptly said that the technology “didn’t meet operational requirements” and wouldn’t be used across the service.

There’s nothing like giving your enemy a rapid review of troop locations for artillery targeting.

The same people who came up with the plan to close Bagram Air Base must have thought up this genius plan.

The Marine In Delta Force During Benghazi

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 1 week ago

I was watching “13 Hours” again a few nights ago, and recalled when Delta showed up at the airport in Tripoli, and when asked where Delta was, one of them said, “We’re it, brother.”  There were two of them.

Now, I won’t rehearse the air power assets that could have been brought to bear from Sigonella, the lies that surrounded the event from the administration, the pre-planned execution of the attack (which involved combined arms, known coordinates, fighter assets in position, etc.).  Nor will I rehearse what my own readers pointed out about these things, nor the fact that General Ham went quietly into the night without saying so much as a word (probably because of an NDA).

But I will observe something I didn’t know about Delta that night at the airport (and their actions in Benghazi).  First, they were there for document destruction, and they did that to the best of their abilities.  But they also assisted the fighting, and did so heroically as did the other men in that engagement.

But did you know this?  One of the Delta operators was a Marine.

Jolly, who declined a request for an interview, would ultimately be awarded the Navy Cross for his heroism there. The soldier with him, Master Sgt. David Halbruner, received the Army’s Distinguished Service Cross. The valor awards are exceeded only by the Medal of Honor.

Little has been known about the Jolly’s actions in Benghazi. There was no public ceremony when he received his valor award and, until recently, his name has not been publicly tied to the mission in media reports.

His hometown paper in North Carolina, the Wilkes Journal-Patriot, recently reported that the 36-year-old who’d graduated from high school about 90 miles north of Charlotte was the Marine who’d gone above and beyond to save other Americans. Jolly recently retired as a master sergeant.

According to testimony, public documents and the person familiar with his actions, Jolly was calm in the face of deadly chaos. He and Halbruner are credited with saving numerous lives that day.

With a rifle strapped to his back amid an onslaught of mortars and machine-gun fire, Jolly tended to the wounded, at one point throwing a man onto his back and shuffling him down a ladder amid a barrage of enemy fire. He helped some get back into the fight and provided vital care to others with life-threatening injuries.

Here’s how then-Gunnery Sgt. Jolly helped get other Americans to safety during a situation that caused a years-long political firestorm thousands of miles away in Washington, DC.

Jolly, an infantry assault Marine, was assigned to a Delta Force detachment in Libya at the time of the Benghazi attack. It’s rare, though not unheard of, for Marines to join the elite Army special-operations teams.

The Marine had deployed to Iraq twice before joining the secretive counterterrorism force, spending about five years carrying out clandestine missions before the Benghazi attack and another five after, according to information about his career obtained by Military.com.

He racked up more than a dozen total deployments with Delta Force.

The Navy Cross Jolly received for his actions in Benghazi was his fourth valor award. He has two Bronze Stars with combat “V” devices – one of which he earned for undisclosed reasons during his time with Delta Force, and a second from a 2004-2005 deployment to Ramadi, Iraq.

Jolly also earned a Navy Commendation Medal with combat distinguishing device and a Purple Heart for injuries sustained during that deployment.

On the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, Jolly was about 600 miles away from Benghazi in Tripoli – roughly the same distance between Chicago and Washington, DC. Since Jolly and Halbruner were some of the only troops in-country, the operation was coordinated not by US Africa Command, but the CIA.

Team Tripoli, made up of Jolly, Halbruner and five others, arrived in Benghazi at about 1:30 a.m. That was about four hours after the attack began and two since Ambassador Christopher J. Stevens had last been seen alive.

The team was led by Glen Doherty, a Global Response Staff (GRS) security officer and former Navy SEAL, who was later killed. He was Team Tripoli’s medic.

The plan, according to the person familiar with the mission, was to leave the airport and head to the hospital, where they believed Stevens was being treated. When they found out Stevens had died, the first ambassador to be killed in the line of duty since 1979, the team headed to the consulate to bolster the diplomatic security personnel and GRS, a group of private military contractors who were fending off the attackers.

“It could’ve gone really, really bad,” said the source familiar with the mission. “It could’ve become 30 American hostages in North Africa. There were seven shooters going in to protect people who don’t shoot for a living.”

By the time they arrived, Sean Smith, a State Department foreign service officer, had also died. It was still dark, just after 5 a.m., according to a congressional timeline of the attack. Within minutes, the first mortar hit.

The attacks continued, with one witness estimating there were as many as 100 insurgents spotted surrounding their location in 20- or 30-man groups. It was a skilled enemy, one of the troops there later told members of Congress.

“It’s not easy … to shoot inside the city and get something on the target within two shots – that’s difficult,” the witness testified. “I would say they were definitely a trained mortar team or had been trained to do something similar to that.”

“I was kind of surprised,” the service member added. “… It was unusual.”

They were there a matter of hours, but at times witnesses said the team feared they wouldn’t make it out alive. It began to “rain down on us,” one of them told lawmakers.

”I really believe that this attack was planned,” the witness said. “The accuracy with which the mortars hit us was too good for any regular revolutionaries.”

In total, six 81-millimeter mortars assaulted the annex within a minute and 13 seconds, a congressional report on the attack states. Doherty and Tyrone Woods, another former SEAL with the GRS, didn’t survive.

[ … ]

Jolly and Halbruner were determined to save them. Amid the fight, they were tying tourniquets to the men’s bodies.

Ubben is alive because Jolly helped move him from the rooftop to a building where diplomatic personnel were hunkered down. Gregory Hicks, who became the acting chief of mission after Stevens died, later described how the gunny did it during a congressional hearing.

“One guy … full of combat gear climbed up [to the roof], strapped David Ubben, who is a large man, to his back and carried him down the ladder, saved him,” Hicks said.

Jolly and Halbruner also went back out to the rooftop to recover the bodies of the fallen.

“They didn’t know whether any more mortars were going to come in. The accuracy was terribly precise,” Hicks said. “… They climbed up on the roof, and they carried Glen’s body and Tyrone’s body down.”

It was for Jolly’s “valorous actions, dedication to duty and willingness to place himself in harm’s way” to save numerous unarmed Americans’ lives that he earned the Navy Cross, according to his citation.

I’m not so sure about that last part.  In the movie there’s a lot made of the fact that the “D boys” threw the bodies off the roof because there wasn’t time to do it any other way and the enemy was still shooting.

Anyway, We Are The Mighty has coverage as well, as does Wilkes Journal-Patriot and Military.com.

In addition to Tate Jolly, David Halbruner was there for Delta.  I can’t find any information on him.

I feel that there’s a whole lot of information I still don’t know about this engagement, and it would be good one day to interview participants in the event, as well as construct a detailed time line of everything that happened.

One thing is for sure.  We’ll never hear the full truth from FedGov.

SEALs Not Deployable Without The Jab

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 1 week ago

Epoch Times.

Navy SEALs have been informed by superiors that they won’t be deployed if they refuse to get a COVID-19 vaccine, even if they’re granted a religious or medical exemption, according to lawyers representing the elite special operations troops and a document seen by The Epoch Times.

“What they’ve been told is if they apply for a religious accommodation, they will no longer be deployable,” R. Davis Younts, who is representing seven SEALs and is in talks to take on approximately 20 others, told The Epoch Times.

Timothy Parlatore, whose firm represents a number of SEALs and other service members concerned about the vaccines, said his clients have also been given a similar ultimatum.

Some SEALs have even been sent home mid-deployment for refusing a COVID-19 vaccine, one of his clients told him.

A document presented to the SEALs says that any special operations personnel, including Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewmen, “who refuse to receive the COVID-19 vaccine based solely on personal or religious beliefs will be disqualified from [special operations] duty.” It was signed by Capt. Liam Hulin.

“This will affect deployment and special pays,” the document also states. “This provision does not pertain to medical contraindications or allergies to vaccine administration.”

The reasons the SEALs don’t want a shot are the same as many unvaccinated Americans. They believe they have so-called natural immunity, or protection against reinfection after getting COVID-19 and recovering. And a subset are Christians who don’t want any medicines that are developed using cells from aborted fetuses.

“These guys are not anti-vax, they just—given the extraordinarily low risk of COVID to them and the substantial risk of unknown long-term effects of the vaccine—they aren’t comfortable with it right now,” Parlatore told The Epoch Times.

The exact number of SEALs considering not getting a vaccine isn’t known, but both Parlatore and a pastor who is advising some of them say it’s in the hundreds. The loss of that many SEALs could devastate the elite force, which has 2,450 active-duty members. So far, lawyers have not been successful in attempts to convince military leaders to alter the harsh mandate.

From one of the comments, “I would love to have the unvaccinated SEALS stay in the United States.  We are going to need them.”

I’m not sure how those who refuse the jab will look at this, whether they will go silently into the night and be quiet like the FedGov wants them to and accept potentially not being able to vote, purchase a firearm, and having to accept a bad conduct discharge (if it comes to that).  My bet would be against that.

However, it disappoints me that any SEALs accepted the jab.  But that’s up to them.

I knew this information anyway several weeks ago.  I know someone who is connected to the SEAL community and he told me this information, and informs me that “morale is very low in the SEAL community at the moment.”

Yea, I don’t doubt it.

The Worst OPSEC Violation In My Lifetime

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 3 weeks ago

News.

Joe Biden just announced a new working group with Britain and Australia to share advanced technologies — including the acquisition of nuclear-powered submarines — in a thinly veiled bid to counter China.

The trio, now known by the acronym AUKUS, will make it easier for the three countries to share information and know-how in key technological areas like artificial intelligence, cyber, quantum, underwater systems, and long-range strike capabilities.

Biden, joined virtually by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Wednesday afternoon, detailed the reasons for the trilateral effort.

“This is about investing in our greatest source of strength, our alliances and updating them to better meet the threats of today and tomorrow,” Biden said from the White House in between two monitors showing the other world leaders. “AUKUS — it sounds strange, all these acronyms, but it’s a good one.”

“We must now take our partnership to a new level,” said Morrison.

“We’re adding a new chapter in our friendship,” Johnson added.

All three countries will work over the next 18 months to figure out how best to deliver the technology, which the U.S. traditionally has only shared with the U.K., the official said. U.S. officials and experts noted that Australia currently doesn’t have the requisite fissile material to run a nuclear-powered submarine, meaning the next year and a half of negotiations will likely feature nuclear-material transfer discussions.

Let’s leave behind for the moment the issue of Australia imprisoning their own people who have not taken the mRNA vaccine, or the draconian lockdowns, the street beatings administered by the cops, and other highly objectionable behavior.

I know folks who left the Navy nuclear program, and while they are allowed to report on their CV or resume what ship they worked on, they cannot publish the type of nuclear reactor, or vice versa, they can put the nuclear reactor type with which they have had experience, but not connect it to a specific ship.  Many of the engineers and scientists at KAPL stay for a long time, but some leave because they can’t publish.  Publishing what they know isn’t allowed.

Because I know nuclear engineering and have been around so many people for so long who work in the same discipline I do, I know things like the allowable SUR (startup rate) they are allowed to achieve when returning to power from a reactor trip (it’s important to get power back in a submarine), as well as many other things about Navy nuclear power propulsion systems.  I know many of the things they cover in their nuclear prep / nuclear fundamentals course, I know fuel enrichments, etc., etc.

I would never divulge the information I know, regardless of whether the information was classified or FOUO or not, and regardless of whether I am under any specific NDA.  It isn’t wise.  I stand to gain no benefit, while potentially divulging sensitive information.  I care about things like that.

Australia is owned to a literal degree by China even more so than the U.S.  Not only is Biden risking violation of NDAs by Australians, whether intentional or not, he is also putting sensitive information in the hands of a country that is beholden to China.  This information spans not just the nuclear technology we have, but defense technology and how the two interrelate and support each other.  You can’t design a core without the software to do it, so this transfer must include things like highly proprietary and sensitive computer codes, from Monte Carlo transport and depletion codes to thermal hydraulics codes using CFD, critical heat flux correlations, DNB correlations, etc., etc.

My mind is racing at the technology we’re getting ready to package up and deliver to people who might not protect it.

In a time when the Department of Defense is concerned about whether TV shows, movies or the gaming industry divulges TTPs (tactics, techniques and procedures) of its SpecOps community, potentially endangering them in future engagements, Biden is committing OPSEC violations of his own.

This is the worst OPSEC violation in my lifetime.  I’ve never seen worse.  Admiral Rickover is turning in his grave.

So General Milley Is The Fall Guy

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 3 weeks ago

As you’ve all seen and heard now, Milley (I loath even to call him General) worked with the ChiComs on ensuring their safety.

Treason, of course, but no different than the treasonous actions of the pretender in chief.   But then there’s this.

Ah, so they needed a fall guy for Afghanistan.  Milley is the odd man out.  Sorry dude, we were all sitting when the music stopped.

F-22 Pilots Walk Off The Job Over The Stab

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 4 weeks ago

I am sharing this with the caveat that I have no way of independently confirming this account.


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