17

Naughty List, ...

36

VM – Ora...

36

This Week in H...

6

A Few Random T...

27

Blog Post

Home Blog Post Page 3

Sunday Sermonette

35
Ft. Worth, Texas

 

 

The Opening Polemic

“When you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing – When you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors – When you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you – When you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice – You may know that your society is doomed.” – Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

 

Hillsboro, Texas

I am posting this location, familiar to LSP, home of many of his sermons, which differ sharply from the sermonettes you may have read on this blog.

The sermonettes here seem to lack the requisite fire and brimstone, however, the one for today is simple and will cause you to consider where we are as a people. Joshua 24:15 (KJV)

“…Choose you this day whom ye will serve…but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

Life is nothing but a series of choices and based on those choices you will be good or not. (Matthew 7:14) “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which. leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

 

Judge Not?

“The man who refuses to judge, who neither agrees nor disagrees, who declares that there are no absolutes and believes that he escapes responsibility, is the man responsible for all the blood that is now spilled in the world. Reality is an absolute, existence is an absolute, a speck of dust is an absolute and so is a human life. Whether you live or die is an absolute. Whether you have a piece of bread or not, is an absolute. Whether you eat your bread or see it vanish into a looter’s stomach, is an absolute.

There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil. The man who is wrong still retains some respect for truth, if only by accepting the responsibility of choice. But the man in the middle is the knave who blanks out the truth in order to pretend that no choice or values exist, who is willing to sit out the course of any battle, willing to cash in on the blood of the innocent or to crawl on his belly to the guilty, who dispenses justice by condemning both the robber and the robbed to jail, who solves conflicts by ordering the thinker and the fool to meet each other halfway. In any compromise between food and poison, it is only death that can win. In any compromise between good and evil, it is only evil that can profit. In that transfusion of blood which drains the good to feed the evil, the compromise is the transmitting rubber tube.”
― Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

 

Closing Thoughts

Many turn from Jesus because of a bad experience with religious people.

We must remind them that Jesus also had a bad experience with religious people…they crucified him.

Follow-Up

18
Komatsu D355A

 

By way of follow up to discussions of early siege weapons and hand weapons:

 

And the question of how armored plate can be put to use, leads to Marvin John Heemeyer (10-28-51 to 6-4-04), a welder who ran a muffler repair shop, and modified a bulldozer who used his vehicle to express his displeasure in Granby, Colorado on June 4, 2004.

Heemeyer had secretly modified a Komatsu D355A bulldozer by adding layers of steel and concrete, intended to serve as armor. He used this to demolish the Granby town hall, the former mayor’s house, and several other buildings.

“It is interesting to observe that I was never caught”, Heemeyer wrote. “This was a part-time project over a ​1 12 year time period.” He was surprised that several men, who had visited the shed late the previous year, had not noticed the modified bulldozer “especially with the 2,000-pound [910 kg] lift fully exposed … somehow their vision was clouded.

Now the subject of a documentary …more here. It’s the story of a man, beloved by all, known for his kindness, who was pushed too far by local government. 

One thing is sure, nothing in the police arsenal could stop him. And how would the dozer stand up to a six pound iron ball fired from a Civil War era Napoleon gun or a Parrot rifled gun? I think that it would hold its own.

 

 

 

This Day in History

The kingdom of Granada falls to the Christian forces of King Ferdinand V and Queen Isabella I, and the Moors lose their last foothold in Spain.

Located at the confluence of the Darro and Genil rivers in southern Spain, the city of Granada was a Moorish fortress that rose to prominence during the reign of Sultan Almoravid in the 11th century.

In 1238, the Christian Reconquest forced Spanish Muslims south, and the kingdom of Granada was established as the last refuge of the Moorish civilization.

Granada flourished culturally and economically for the next 200 years, but in the late 15th century internal feuds and a strengthened Spanish monarchy under Ferdinand and Isabella signaled the end of Moorish civilization in Spain.

On January 2, 1492, King Boabdil surrendered Granada to the Spanish forces, and in 1502 the Spanish crown ordered all Muslims forcibly converted to Christianity.

The next century saw a number of persecutions, and in 1609 the last Moors still adhering to islam were expelled from Spain.

Which is It?

11

 

Arizona Voter Fraud

An update from Gateway Pundit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Word on the Ammo Shortage

There are seven million new firearms owners since March 2020 –

…more here.

 

I was told recently that I should live every day as if it was my last. I replied that if I did that, the body count would be significant. There are some bits of (helpful) advice that should be ignored.

 

A-10 Ladder Door Art

When they won’t let you have nose art on your warplane.

 

Who do You Believe?

In England – NHS England says that there are now more COVID-19 patients in hospitals than there were during the April peak of the first wave.

However, public data shows that hospitals are emptier than at this time last year, with beds being at 89% occupancy compared to 95% occupancy in December 2019.  …more here

Views

25
Mons Meg

 

This Sums it up

 

Title: Herd of sheep crossing Grand Coulee Dam, 1930.

or…democrats, following a walking corpse and a whore, 2021. It looks a lot like the same thing to me.

 

Advice – or a Dare?

 

Portrait of a group of Palace Grenadiers, 1870s-1880s, Russia. I like the attitude.

 

Mons Meg

Mons Meg

I lived about three blocks west of the Edinburgh Castle, some decades ago, for a period of about four months while working in-country. I loved the vibe of the castle, exercising by running through the gardens between  Princess St. and the castle. There’s a lot that can be recommended about a visit to the castle (including the Edinburgh Tattoo). One of the most interesting is Mons Meg.

Mons Meg is a Bombard style of Cannon that was forged at Mons, Belgium in 1449 by the appointment of Philip Duke of Burgundy and gifted to James II of Scotland in 1454.

Used to great effect at many sieges Meg’s colossal 6 ton weight would have been mounted in an angled depression on the ground rather than on a trestle as seen here and was capable of firing a great stone ball weighing well over 300 lbs a distance of nearly 2 miles. Meg was finally used only for ceremonial occasions until her barrel burst in 1680.

At 520mm, Mons Meg is one of the worlds largest cannons by caliber.

A Little History (for the day)

21

 

Today, hindsight is 2020…

 

This Day in History (1862-63) 

December 31, 1862-January 2, 1863 – The Battle of Stone’s River/Murfreesboro, TN

35,000 Confederate soldiers’ under BRAXTON BRAGG’ and 44,000 Federals engaged in a bloody’ but inconclusive battle. Each commander planned to attack with his left and hold with his right. If that had taken place at the same time, each army would have swung around each other like a revolving door, but BRAGG struck first.

The Confederate attack made good progress,, but a stout defense in the center of the line by General Phil Sheridan prevented a total collapse on this first day, and the fighting petered out.

On Jan 1, 1863 no combat took place as both sides celebrated the New Year – without much to celebrate. The fighting resumed on January 2, when General Bragg ordered Breckinridge to assault a heavily defended federal position on a hill, anchored by over 50 cannon, firing canister.

Following that repulse, Bragg received a false report that Rosecrans was being reinforced. The Confederates withdrew to Tullahoma, TN with significant losses on both sides. Rosecrans lost 1,677 killed, 7543 wounded and 3,686 captured or missing. Bragg’s Confederates lost 1,294 killed, 7,945 wounded and 2,500 captured or missing. Both armies licked their wounds and didn’t engage in anymore combat for the following six months.

 

The Prague Astronomical Clock

Installed in this building in 1410, it is the oldest clock still operating. And to think that SiG, Old NFO and WSF were there then….  ;^)

 

A Historical Sea Story

The passenger steamer SS Warrimoo was quietly knifing its way through the waters of the mid-Pacific on its way from Vancouver to Australia. The navigator had just finished working out a star fix and brought Captain John DS. Phillips, the result. The Warrimoo’s position was LAT 0º 31′ N and LONG 179 30′ W. The date was 31 December 1899.

“Know what this means?” First Mate Payton broke in, “We’re only a few miles from the intersection of the Equator and the International Date Line”. Captain Phillips was prankish enough to take full advantage of the opportunity for achieving the navigational freak of a lifetime. He called his navigator to the bridge to check & double check the ship’s position. He changed course slightly so as to bear directly on his mark. Then he adjusted the engine speed.

The calm weather & clear night worked in his favor. At mid-night the SS Warrimoo lay on the Equator at exactly the point where it crossed the International Date Line! The consequences of this bizarre position were many:

The forward part (bow) of the ship was in the Southern Hemisphere & in the middle of summer.

The rear (stern) was in the Northern Hemisphere & in the middle of winter.

The date in the aft part of the ship was 31 December 1899.

In the bow (forward) part it was 1 January 1900.

This ship was therefore not only in:

Two different days,

Two different months,

Two different years,

Two different seasons

But in two different centuries – all at the same time!

2021

28
What wonders await?

 

Looking back a day to 2020

There were no liberal states…only liberal cities. Except for Vermont and Connecticut… And I’m not even sure about those, given the rigged voting machines. When you take the “Dominion Insurance Policy” out of the mix, did the donkeys win a single state?

 

Is anyone into Sacrificing Vegans Today?

The ferric oxide (rust)-rich soil of Hormuz Island in the Persian Gulf is perfect for metal album covers and vegan blood sacrifices.

 

Here’s another fine mess you got me into…

We are in the position that we find ourselves in because we treated (and continue to treat) politicians like celebrities instead of servants.

In turn, they see themselves as rulers and not as representatives.

A look back through history finds that it’s not an uncommon situation.

 

The Photo (below)

It is referred to as the most intelligent picture ever taken: Participants of the 5th Solvay Conference on Quantum Mechanics, 1927. They are, among others: Albert Einstein, Marie S. Curie, and Niels Bohr. 17 of the 29 attendees were or became Nobel Prize winners. They’re all dead now. One can but wonder what they think of their present situation.

 

Cartel Concerns

The Mexicans dominate much of the drug trade in the Americas and in Europe. Even if they are not the hands-on distributors, they impact the price because of supply and demand.

As we roll into 2021, I thought that I’d share how they are feeling about the situation. They are hopeful that if VP Joe Biden and his consort (Jo and Ho) take office, that they can simply donate to the cause to free key people who are now in custody. Grease well-applied is not an unfamiliar activity for the cartels and we know that Joe is cool with that.

The concern that hard drugs will be legalized, also a donkey talking point, would hurt their bottom line, but they do sell to the world, not just to the USA.

Thus, even the drug cartels have concerns as we enter this new year.

 

 

Iggy Says “Hi”

The Officers and Crew of the USS Paul Ignatius send best wishes to Virtual Mirage for the New Year.

 

New for 2021

The AGM-183 ARRW is a hypersonic weapon planned for use by the United States Air Force. Developed by Lockheed Martin, the boost glide weapon is propelled to a maximum speed of Mach 20 by a missile before gliding towards its target.

When it must get there on time.

I wonder how long it will take for the Biden Administration to sell a few dozen of these to the People’s Republic of China?

 

New Year’s Eve Extravaganza

37
Dystopian Future

 

My New Year’s Eve Rant

Tonight, we kiss 2020 good-bye (and good riddance). By all accounts, it’s been one hell of a year. From impeaching an innocent President to the plague and rigged voting machines, this one goes down in the history books as being one unpleasant year.

My income took a hit, but so did a lot of people. I wasn’t ruined and it was only a blip on my radar, but a lot of people around the world were financially crushed.

I find the lockdowns across the country to be slightly amusing. What’s wrong with allowing people out on New Year’s Eve to celebrate if they want to go out and take the risk of contracting the plague?  They’ve been risking STD’s on the ‘night of nights’ for a very long time. STD’s are a social disease and the plague is a socialist disease.

And once they’ve had the plague and survived, they’re immune. No need for a mask, right? No need for a vaccination either. I realize that this isn’t a very woke sentiment.

This has been the Year of the Rat, and we won’t have another one for twelve years. It’s an auspicious year — allegedly — but the Chinese took a hit this year as people worldwide got a glimpse of what China had planned for all of them. None more than the Australians. They seemed to break their chains all the while China has maintained that they bought Australia fair and square.

Though the outcome of the national election, rife with fraud, is still in the balance, it would seem that a corrupt, walking corpse and a whore are now at the helm. Year of the Rat.

The censorship promised by the communist regime would tend to portend the end of this blog within the next year. I’m not predicting its demise, just taking the donkeys at their word.

 

Prefiled Bill in the New York State Senate for January 6, 2021.

It seems unconstitutional on its face as overly vague and broad and probably also violates Article 1, Sections 10 of the US Constitution prohibiting bills of attainder. But if the law is in the way of a Donkey initiative, they simply ignore it.

2021 begins, my. friends.

 

I have no New Year’s Resolutions with the possible exception of working on a book – maybe finishing a project or starting a new one. But you may share yours here as the clock moves down to zero and we enter 2021.

 

It’s an open forum and the floor is yours.

Happy New Year.

 

 

 

 

 

Countdown to 2021

9
Because you know things will get weirder.

 

 

Retro Christmas

CIA Special Activities Division Christmas tree in Kabul, Afghanistan, Dec 2001

 

Truth? In 2021? Don’t count on it.

 

Fun with Maps

The nearest foreign country to each Italian provincial capital.

Today in History

Today, December 30, 1460, Richard, Duke of York, Lord Protector of England, unwisely gave battle at Wakefield…

Richard Duke of York was lured out of his refuge within Sandal Castle by a small force of Lancastrians under the Duke of Somerset and Lord Clifford, onto Wakefield Green. Here he is ambushed by a much larger Lancastrian force, hiding in the surrounding woods; under the treacherous Sir Andrew Trollope and Sir John Neville of Raby (which commanders Richard thought were bringing Yorkist reinforcements, but who defected instead to the Lancastrians and attacked the Duke).

Duke Richard was killed in the fighting. His second son, Edmund of Rutland, was cut down trying to escape the disaster (possibly by Clifford, avenging the death of his father at the Battle of First St. Albans). The Earl of Salisbury, a half-uncle of the turncoat John Neville, was captured during the following night. He was taken to Pontefract Castle, where he was subsequently dragged out and handed over to the local commoners, to whom he had been a harsh overlord. After suffering much abuse at their hands, he was beheaded.

The severed heads of York, Rutland and Salisbury were displayed afterwards over the gates of the city of York, with the Duke’s adorned by a paper crown and a sign saying “Let York overlook the town of York”. Such was the abusive treatment meted out to fallen enemies throughout the bitter War of the Roses.

The Lancastrians, joined now by Queen Margaret of Anjou (Henry VI’s wife) and Scots borderers bent on plunder, marched south toward London. At Second St. Albans they won another victory on February 17, 1461, over a Yorkist army led by Richard Neville, the Earl of Warwick. After this victory, the Lancastrians recovered King Henry, previously a prisoner of Warwick’s. However, despite their victory, London closed its gates to the Lancastrians and they were forced to return to the north.

The death of York and the recapture of Henry VI by his supporters cleared the way for Warwick (subsequently to be called the “Kingmaker”) to crown Richard of York’s eldest son, Edward of March, as King Edward IV.

Edward and Warwick would proved an able command-team; and Edward an inspiring leader. Together they soon reversed the fading fortunes of the Yorkist cause, and Edward would hold the throne till his death in 1483.

This and That

28
U.S.-European Solar Orbiter spacecraft visits Venus on Dec. 27.

 

 

This is for LSP – SMLE No.4 MkI rifle

Lee Enfield

Manufactured by the Royal Small Arms Factory in Enfield, England c.WW2. .303 British 10-round box magazine, bolt action repeater.

It was the penultimate series of British bolt action service rifle, before the final jungle carbine. It is interesting to note that the British never felt the need for a semi-automatic rifles during the 52 years they used Lee-Enfield rifles, despite being exposed to Dieudonné Saive’s early FN-49 designs. This is in stark contrast with almost every other faction of the World Wars. Was it a lack of vision, was the crown cheap, or was the rifle just that good?

Fitted with a No.32 MkIII scope and a hardwood cheekpiece.

 

Andrew Yang’s Initiative

 

Make Sure your Children are Hidin from Biden

 

Identify the Aircraft

The answer is at the bottom of this blog. I would be surprised if anyone pegged it right off.

 

The Democrat Cry “Make the US into Zimbabwe” Gains Traction

 

Fun with Maps

Suicide mortality rate by county.

 

Where neanderthals were found naturally in the world.

 

Where is Christmas a Public Holiday?

 

Percentage change in deaths for every month in 2020 compared with average deaths for every month in the period 2016-2019, Europe. Make of that what you will.

 

Median age by US congressional district. Utah’s 3rd District was the lowest because of a high birth rate.

 

Counties in the US with a Spanish speaking majority.

 

 

 

Answer: Identify the Aircraft

Caproni Campini N-1 August 1940. It was the second jet aircraft to fly in the world, the first being the German Heinkel He-178 (below).

He-178

Oppression Tuesday

22
The Outrage Continues

 

 

Happy Birthday, Texans

Today, 175 years ago, Texas became the 28th State in the Union. It was the Lone Star State that stood alone, fought, and won its independence from Mexican Oppression on March 2, 1836. Almost 185 years later it is Texas, the 28th State, that now leads America as the beacon of rugged individualism, liberty, freedom, and economic growth and opportunity.

 

A Move in the Right Direction

(The Bee) When baseball fields open again, those standing for the traditional seventh-inning stretch will be singing some different lyrics to “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”

After over 100 years of selling its caramel popcorn snack under the name Cracker Jack, Frito-Lay announced today that it would be rebranded as the less offensive “Caucasian Jack.”

“We are very sorry to all the crack—er, I mean, Caucasians we have hurt over the years,” said a spokesperson. “Cracker is an offensive stereotype, and we must make sure that all foods and snack products are culturally sensitive. Think about all the white people who have had to suffer in silence as tens of thousands of baseball fans sang out the hurtful lyrics ‘Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks.'”

“No more. The bigotry stops today.”

The move was applauded by hurt white people, though they are still criticizing Frito-Lay for how pale and pasty-white the Cracker Jack guy is on the logo.

 

More Oppression

California Democrats voted to add two colors to the LBGTQ+ flag. …more here

The city of West Hollywood currently has rainbow flag crosswalks at Santa Monica and San Vicente boulevards. The city is now set to pave other those crosswalks and paint a new flag that adds black and brown stripes to the original red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet.

The controversial new flag seeks “to show solidarity with Black and Brown LGBTQ+ people,” according to The Advocate.

Looking Forward

22

 

The Map of a Neutron Star

An interesting article …more here.

Pulsars are the lighthouses of the universe. These tiny, compact objects are neutron stars — the remnants of once-massive stars — that spin rapidly, beaming radiation into space. Now, for the first time, astronomers have mapped the surface of a 16-mile-wide pulsar in exquisite detail.

 

A thing for bling…

Combining Masks with High Fashion (retro)

One take on masks, 1920

It’s said that if you hang onto any fashion that goes out of use, if you keep it long enough, it will come back in a big way. You would only need to have kept them for 100 years in this case.

 

The Sovietization of California

There is an on-point article by Dennis Prager that I refer you to, that mirrors my experiences lately.  …more here

Yes, it feels as if we are living in a Sci-Fi book. Is the “California 2020 Experience” some sort of weird social experiment? Maybe. It depends on how paranoid you are. Is it a model for the American future?  Did anyone in 2018 think that President Trump’s Administration would be followed by a walking corpse and a whore running the place? And that Jo an Ho wouldn’t have to campaign, but just relied on rigged voting machines? It’s obvious that somebody did.

And in NY City it hasn’t taken long to turn the place into Caracas.

…more here

 

The American Future

 

Just a(nother) Mini-Rant

  • If Pakistan can afford nuclear weapons, they can afford to pay for their own gender studies programs.
  • Is there any nation that taxes its people so that they can send money to America?

 

What Are You?

13
PzII Ausf.L Luchs from the 1st company, 9th Reconnaissance Battalion, 9th Panzer Division

 

 

This blog has featured a number of articles about the change in philosophy in the US Marine Corps today. It’s changing from an “army division”, acting as a component of a heavy maneuvering land force back into naval infantry. There are a lot of people who are uncomfortable with that.  I think that it’s visionary. What is the Marine Corps, and what was it designed to be?

Amphibious warfare, littoral warfare (not the same thing but it can be interchangeable), augmenting a strategic plan – in the Pacific primarily, was what the Marine Corps was designed to be coming out of the Second World War. They were employed very effectively as a light infantry raiding force. And they’re getting back to their roots in order to present an American response to China in the Pacific as a component of a larger strategy.

It’s easy to let mission and philosophy mission slip to get into your way of thinking if you’re in the military. What were SEALs doing in Afghanistan (Operation Red Wings, etc.)? Where is the nearest water? Why were they operating as sniper support for Marines, operating as heavy maneuver forces, in Iraq? I’m not saying that they couldn’t do it. I simply suggest that it’s not what they were originally designed to do, trained to do and that the USMC couldn’t provide its own snipers.

Australia SAS

Claudio B. (Italy) and I have been discussing this back-channel as it currently applies to Australia’s SAS. The argument is made that the Australian SAS has morphed into elite light infantry, rather than being SAS.

Sometimes you’re forced to throw people into combat to plug a hole in the way that the German Fallschirmjäger were used in the Second World War once it was determined that they wouldn’t jump anymore. The Air Force’s Parachute Infantry was folded into heavy army maneuver forces where they fought valiantly, but not as they had originally been trained to do.

Mission slip is sometimes a matter of expediency (fallschirmjäger) but more often it’s a political matter, or there is a military commander who doesn’t have his priorities straight.

Gen. Burford at Gettysburg

Confederate General JEB Stuart in the Gettysburg Campaign forgot that his role as a cavalry commander was to act as a scout and as a screen for heavy infantry, and he rode off in search of glory, leaving the large maneuvering infantry force blind in enemy country. In the same campaign, Union General Buford’s cavalry dismounted to fight as infantry to slow the blinded Confederate infantry as a matter of expediency.

Sometimes history presents an opportunity for people who understand what is going on, and sometimes it’s a combination of vision and luck (T. E. Lawrence at Aqaba).

Ok, I’ll get to the Point

1876 Campaign

If you are Col. Custer (reconnaissance in force for Terry, Gibbons and Crook) in the 1876 US Army Campaign against the Sioux, things always seem to work better if your military component is doing what it was designed to do. Charismatic leadership with an eye toward a political future, over-playing your hand almost always results in disaster. You could argue that Lord Cornwalis’ Southern Campaign during the American Revolution was the same sort of ill conceived situation.

Can these situations be portrayed as rules? Maybe, it’s a stretch, but I’ll try.

Rule One is (when possible) not to use your military components in a way inconsistent with their purpose on a larger canvas. Don’t use fighter pilots as infantry.

Rule Two is to avoid having politicians define how specific military units should be used. Don’t use the SAS as infantry.

Rule Three is to know your limitations. Custer at the Little Big Horn.

Thoughts on Turkey and China

24

 

Turkey

Of course, I’m addressing the country, not the delicious bird that Americans consume in vast numbers (800 million tons+) annually.

The U.S.-Turkey friendship dates to 1831, when the United States established diplomatic relations with the Ottoman Empire.

After World War I and the founding of the Turkish Republic, the United States established diplomatic relations with the Republic of Turkey in 1927 (under Mustafa Kemal Atatürk 1881-1938). The Economic and Technical Cooperation agreement – signed July 12, 1947 between the United States and Turkey – advanced the relationship further. The agreement implemented the Truman Doctrine and its policy “to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures.”

On 15 July 2016, a military coup d’état was attempted in Turkey against state institutions, including the government and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Then President Barack Hussein Obama condemned the July 15, 2016, coup attempt.

The US has had it’s own coup d’état problem, first in late 2016, led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and it’s “insurance policy” to see that President Trump wasn’t seated as president, in 2019-20 with a bogus impeachment, charging President Trump with what former Vice President Biden had been doing and in the 2020 elections with rigged voting machines.

Turkey is a NATO Ally (of convnience) and a regional partner. Is it in our continued interest to keep Turkey anchored to the Euro-Atlantic community?

Mapping the Turkish military’s expanding footprint

The new Turkish Islamic revolution under Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the new Turkish sultan, a professional politician – as sultans usually are – has been a disaster. Looking at the map above at the Turkish military footprint, you might be persuaded that Turkish influence has spread. There is a thug element to the spread but it is a transparent thugocracy, and Turkey’s neighbors don’t like it. Turkish state sanctioned “pirates” raid European territorial waters and seize fishing vessels – which end up in Turkish-controlled Libya. Turkish chicanery in business deals have prompted EU nations to ‘cut them off’.

Erdoğan had a vision of Turkey (under his patronage) as an expanding power and to do that, he had to imprison his opposition. The best way of doing that was to use Islam and newly minted Islamic courts that would “make it legal”. Then he had to whitewash the pig and try and sell it to the rest of the world as the newer, and purer Turkey.

It hasn’t worked and the Turkish economy is shrinking. Turkish neighbors don’t trust them. And despite a large standing army, genuine Turkish influence is shrinking. Unless you listen to CNN-Turk, the official broadcast station of the new sultanate. They will sing the praises of the new imam,  Erdoğan. There may be a familiar ring to this.

 

China in Focus …more here

When someone from the Uyghur ethnic minority live streams on a Chinese platform, he can be identified, and his video will be flagged. That’s thanks to a technique from Chinese online platform Alibaba.

The World Health Organization is set to go to Wuhan to investigate the origins of the CCP virus. Will they be successful?

What is the real strength of the People’s Liberation Army? Some media reports give insight into poor management and performance levels.

The US charged a China-based executive of video conferencing giant Zoom, for disrupting a meeting on it’s platform for human rights in China.

The European Union and China aim to reach an agreement. The Chinese Communist Party is making some promises on trade and investment.

The Value of Suppression

29

 

Peace, through superior firepower.

 

Why has it taken THIS LONG?

The US Marine Corps has started fielding suppressors to rifle squads …more here. (h/t Claudio)

The service “began the process of fielding thousands of suppressors to infantry, reconnaissance and special operation units” in December for use on the Corps’ arsenal of M27 Infantry Automatic Rifles, M4 carbines, and M4A1 Close Quarter Battle Weapons…

The Army’s Next Generation Squad Weapons are all suppressed as well. They will chamber the 6.8 SOCOM cartridge, while the Marine Corps will stick with 5.56 mm for the time being.

 

In the USA, the government taxes civilian silencers. Why is that? Did the Constitution mention that necessity in the Second Amendment?

 

Old as Dirt?

I suspect that I am because I can recall this far back. How things have changed.

 

Some People take armor — too far.

Yes, I know that it’s concept art – but even so.

 

Teacher Speaks

Another Day in Paradise

20

 

 

Sermonette Corner 

It is Sunday, after all. I’m trying to make some effort here.

HMS Tigress – Historical Note

(above) Danish gunboats attacking H.M.S Tigress at Agersø, c. 1808 by Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg, 1783 – 1853

HMS Tigress launched 1801, was first the American merchantman Numa and then the French privateer Pierre Cézar that the Royal Navy acquired by capture and put into service as the gunbrig Tigress. She spent some time on the West African coast in the suppression of the slave trade. The Admiralty later renamed her Algerine. She was broken up in 1818.

 

“No captain can do very wrong if he places his ship alongside that of the enemy.” – Adm. Horatio Nelson

 

For you Master and Commander fans

Spithead Anchorage, by Geoff Hunt

Several of the ships and vessels associated with Captain Jack Aubrey are gathered at Spithead, just off Portsmouth…From left to right the vessels are: Ariel, 18 gun sloop (The Surgeon’s Mate); Polychrest, experimental 24-gun sloop (Post Captain); foreground Leopard, 50-gun fourth-rate (Desolation Island); Boadicea, 38-gun frigate (The Mauritius Command); Ringle, Baltimore-built armed schooner (The Commodore)

 

War Drums

HMM-268 helo on the tarmac at Al Taqaddum, Iraq

I’ve heard that Pres-Elect Biden has already reached out to Iraq to change the “status of forces agreement” to allow for three US divisions in Northern Iraq as part of the push to “aid Syria”. The Military Industrial Complex is itching for a new war.

 

Progressive Corner

 

Porn Corner

FJ-40 Porn, because that is one sexy rig.

 

Though there is still hope…

The American Election won’t be like a bicycle race.

 

The Soldier Comes Home

However, if you’ve “seen the Elephant”, do you really ever come home? Things for you will never be the same. Not ever.

 

Message to Joe Biden —

Boxing Day

51
A-26 Invader

 

Captioned Photo

The Second World War produced the apex of propellor driven aircraft. Yes, some modifications would come along that we seen in the new C-130’s and E-2D and in other Air Forces, but those have come along sixty years later. The A-26 Havoc flew after the Second World War in the Vietnam War and the War in Laos, and at the Bay of Pigs. It was an exceptional aircraft in all respects. Some of them are currently used in firefighting roles.

Modified A-26

A frequent visitor to the White Wolf Mine flew OV-10A Broncos (FAC) in Vietnam. The OV-10A is another favorite aircraft that is still in service in firefighting roles.

 

She Has Skills

 

Yes, it’s Boxing Day – all day long

 

The Day’s Festivities

Boxing Day is often also “range day”, but it’s supposed to snow here today and tomorrow, and I am enough of a fair weather shooter to believe that discretion is the better part of valor.

Thanks Jules.

 

You’re supposed to open your Christmas presents on Boxing Day. How many of you waited? I’m guessing – not many.

Is it proper to receive an “old weapon” on Christmas and open up with it on Boxing Day? Even if it’s snowing?

Christmas Greetings

40

 

 

 

Merry Christmas to all of you from the White Wolf Mine

 

A Look Back

The year was 1776, the month, December. Following a cataclysmic series of defeats in New York and New Jersey, the Continental Army, under the command of General George Washington, had retreated into Pennsylvania. Plagued by desertions, dwindling rates of re-enlistment, and plummeting morale, the Americans stood at the precipice of defeat.

On Christmas Day, in a desperate bid for victory, General Washington split his troops into three columns, planning a pincer attack on the enemy’s winter quarters. As their feet bled through the rags that had replaced their boots, as their friends sat down to rest in the freezing weather and did not stand up again, the American soldiers stalwartly pressed on.

Marching through the night, a sudden storm prevented two of the columns from crossing the icy river before them – yet General Washington’s resolve never faltered. That morning, General George Washington crossed the Delaware River, entered Trenton, New Jersey, and defeated the Hessians in what was later deemed a “Christmas Miracle”. The Battle of Trenton became the turning point for the Revolutionary War, and the dream of America was saved.

 

 

A Look Around

The reason for the Holiday and the reason for all of us is found at the foundation of Christmas – the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.

There have been pagan traditions interwound with the holiday, and we all have our family memories and traditions.

Only leave Santa one small mug of egg nog because he has a LOT of homes to visit. That’s discrimination…

Let’s buy that plastic tree at Costco with the light embedded… do you wonder what the Chinese workers who made it thought?

I know the reason for the season, but toys matter too.

Q – Can you have too many firearms?

A – No.

And if you’re feeling really lucky, come and take. But if you do it when half the presents under the tree for family are firearms, ammo, knives, tomahawks and ammo, you really picked the wrong day.

 

You have work to do

Identify the Aircraft – do you think that I’d give you a Christmas break?

A

This one is too easy. I can’t believe that I’m even asking, but it’s Christmas.

B

C

The Lewis Gun is a dead give-away.

D

Yes, it’s a PBY, but I want the full designation if you’re going to play. The ball turret on the nose, the large radar and the taller vertical stabilizer are all strong hints.

 

Democrat Plans for Santa…

The Big Night

6

 

 

Hubble Space Telescope Photo – Convergence

 

 

 

Today in History (Dec 24)

10

It’s easier to get into a war than it is to get out of one.

On December 24, 1979, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, under the pretext of upholding the Soviet-Afghan Friendship Treaty of 1978.

As midnight approached, the Soviets organized a massive military airlift into Kabul, involving an estimated 280 transport aircraft and three divisions of almost 8,500 men each. Within a few days, the Soviets had secured Kabul, deploying a special assault unit against Tajberg Palace. Elements of the Afghan army loyal to Hafizullah Amin put up a fierce, but brief resistance.

On December 27, Babrak Karmal, exiled leader of the Parcham faction of the Marxist People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), was installed as Afghanistan’s new head of government. And Soviet ground forces entered Afghanistan from the north.

The Soviets, however, were met with fierce resistance when they ventured out of their strongholds into the countryside. Resistance fighters, called mujahidin, saw the Christian or atheist Soviets controlling Afghanistan as a defilement of Islam as well as of their traditional culture. Proclaiming a “jihad”(holy war), they gained the support of the Islamic world.

The mujahidin employed guerrilla tactics against the Soviets. They would attack or raid quickly, then disappear into the mountains, causing great destruction without pitched battles. The fighters used whatever weapons they could grab from the Soviets or were given by the United States.

The tide of the war turned with the 1987 introduction of U.S. shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles. The Stingers allowed the mujahidin to shoot down Soviet planes and helicopters on a regular basis.

New Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev decided it was time to get out. Demoralized and with no victory in sight, Soviet forces started withdrawing in 1988. The last Soviet soldier crossed back across the border on February 15, 1989.

It was the first Soviet military expedition beyond the Eastern bloc since World War II and marked the end of a period of improving relations (known as détente) in the Cold War. Subsequently, the SALT II arms treaty was shelved and the U.S. began to re-arm.

Fifteen thousand Soviet soldiers were killed.

The long-term impact of the invasion and subsequent war was profound. First, the Soviets never recovered from the public relations and financial losses, which significantly contributed to the fall of the Soviet empire in 1991. Secondly, the war created a breeding ground for terrorism and the rise of Osama bin Laden.

Christmas Eve

26

 

President Trump (MAGA) signed an executive order designating Christmas Eve as a federal holiday. Thank you, President Trump. The swamp recoiled but it’s done now. I don’t think that future presidents will undo it.

 

Is The Christmas Tree an Asherah Pole?

“Thou shalt not plant thee a grove of any trees near unto the altar of the Lord thy God.” Deuteronomy 16:21

Conceivably someone who did not understand the context could argue that this verse applied to modern day churches and that trees near them are forbidden. But in context, and translated correctly, this verse forbids Asherah poles, or groves near holy places. This commandment was directed at a common Canaanite religious practice, and directed the Israelites to not worship the goddess Asherah.

Recently I came across someone who said their father considered Christmas trees to be “of the devil” and pagan because Jeremiah 10:2-5 forbids it. In the King James Version the critical verses read:

2 Thus saith the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.

3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.

4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.

5 They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.

In this case the father interpreted these verses to be an condemnation of Christmas (“the customs of the people”) and Christmas trees (“for one cutteth a tree out of the forest”). But with a little bit of historical knowledge (and a slightly better translation) we find that this is actually condemnation against worshiping wooden idols, such as wooden statues of the goddess Asherah.

A more modern translation (New Revised Standard Version) of these verses reads:

2 Thus says the Lord: Do not learn the way of the nations, or be dismayed at the signs of the heavens; for the nations are dismayed at them.

3 For the customs of the peoples are false: a tree from the forest is cut down, and worked with an ax by the hands of an artisan;

4 people deck it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so that it cannot move.

5 Their idols are like scarecrows in a cucumber field, and they cannot speak; they have to be carried, for they cannot walk. Do not be afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, nor is it in them to do good.

Because someone did not understand the historical context of this passage, they interpreted it to mean that Christmas trees were forbidden. This is why we need to learn the context of the scriptures or we will think things like, God condemns Christmas trees, and miss the original teaching of, “don’t worship idols.”

-h/t QL

 

Saturn, Jupiter and Moons in one shot

The sky is a massive clock and the night sky was studied for signs of significance. If God was to send a message of cause and effect, referencing stars (or planets) in the night sky as signs, would be a good way to get the message to people who didn’t have GPS and electronic/digital clocks on their i-phones.

 

Christmas Traditions – In the hidden corners of Europe

“The charm and importance of Christmas among the locals of Maramureș reverberates in the much-anticipated preparations around this holiday. In Romania, Christmas is celebrated on December 25, whereas in Ukraine the festivities take place on January 7, according to the calendar of the Orthodox Church. But in both cases the main celebrations last for several weeks, with family and friend gatherings, traditional food, music, and dance – all part of local customs maintained for generations.” …more here.

 

 

Not a bad Q and A

NAVY CW5

If Navy Master Chiefs walk and talk with God, the CW5 believes that he IS The Almighty…and you can take that to the bank.

W-5 has with a starting monthly pay of $8,055. The starting pay for an Ensign, the next rank up is $3,287.10 per month. The starting pay for a Lieutenant Commander is $4,985.40…Maximum base pay with longevity is about double those amounts.

 

What do you want to bet…

That there is a coyote under the rock?

 

It’s Coming…be patient. When you live off the grid, it might take just a wee bit longer. And coal is a decent gift.

 

Christmas Movies?

But if you have a tradition of Chinese Take-Out on Christmas Eve…

 

Parting Shot

Private Frank Holm of the Calgary Highlanders Regiment wrote in his diary on Christmas Eve: “When our piper heard that the Germans had played Christmas music on the frontline in Groesbeek, it must have struck a nerve with him. Opponents who treated each other with humanity and companionship during Christmas. He took his bagpipes and started playing. It was unfortunate for him that the Germans apparently did not appreciate the howling sound. They scattered mortar rounds around him. All that was touched was his pride as a musician.”

Picture: A soldier of 1st Battalion, Rifle Brigade, 7th Armored Division firing a 2-inch mortar, 31 December 1944