Civil War in Ethopia
The Ethiopian federal government has largely won in its battle with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), the party that served until now as government of the country’s Tigray state, and that once dominated politics nationwide. The federal government and allies have recaptured the state capital and major towns, though TPLF forces continue to hold out in other areas.
Among the Ethiopian federal government’s allies are both the neighboring Ethiopian state of Amhara and the neighboring country of Eritrea. Eritrea was a bitter enemy of Ethiopia right up until 2018, when it reconciled with the new Ethiopian federal government (but not with the TPLF). In fact, several once-disputed areas along the border – which even Ethiopia’s government has agreed since 2018 should belong to Eritrea – were still controlled by Ethiopian forces up until the current conflict.
The only reason that I mention this here, because it’s essentially a battle between communists for control of a dam, and territory, is because shot-callers in the Biden regime have been talking about sending US troops into the middle of that civil war. They may yet to that for the sake of ‘peacekeeping’ but for all intents and purposes – we’re unlikely to be going there. There’s not much profit in it for the military industrial complex unless there’s a lot of shooting and hardware expended.
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He is Winston Smith. He works for the state, and his job is to rewrite history. He sits at a table with a telescreen in front of him that watches everything he does. To one side is something called a memory hole—when Winston puts things in it, he assumes they are burned and lost forever. Tasks are delivered to him in cylinders through a pneumatic tube. The task might involve something big, like a change in what country the state is at war with: when the enemy changes, all references to the previous war with a different enemy need to be expunged. Or the task might be something small: if an individual falls out of favor with the state, photographs of him being honored need to be altered or erased altogether from the records. Winston’s job is to fix every book, periodical, newspaper, etc. that reveals or refers to what used to be the truth, in order that it conform to the new truth.
Not so farfetched now is it?
Winston’s awareness of this endless, mighty effort to alter reality makes him cynical and disaffected. He comes to see that he knows nothing of the past, of real history: “Every record has been destroyed or falsified,” he says at one point, “every book has been rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street and building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And that process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. . . . Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”
Does any of this sound familiar?
“The perfect fight is one that is over before the loser really understands what is going on. The perfect defense is a counter-attack that succeeds before the assailant discovers that he has bitten off more than he can chew” -Jeff Cooper
US Navy Stuff
No other navy has the difficulties defining the difference between an aircraft carrier and an amphibious assault ship in the same way that the US Navy does. The real difference is that an aircraft carrier (CVN) carries E-2D Hawkeye electronic warfare aircraft. It’s a big aircraft and it requires room, which means a larger ship, with nuclear reactors to push it and when you give a mouse a cookie…you get the picture.
The Navy has struggled with different concepts to reduce the size of the airborne early warning and electronic warfare aircraft, they’ve struggled with drones, they’ve looked at artificial intelligence (vaporware at this point) which will work the way that trained people do. They’ve gnashed their teeth, they’ve proposed alternatives – robotic drones that can be carried onboard. But that dog don’t hunt.
The Air Force, trimming its budget to prepare for World War Three, is cutting back its unmanned surveillance aircraft. In the proposed 2021 defense budget, the Air Force seeks to retire 24 of its 35 Global Hawk drones. These are huge High-Altitude Long-Endurance drones with wings wider than those on a 737 airliner. They’re designed to remain aloft up to 60,00 feet high for over 32 hours at a time while surveilling everything below with surface-scanning radars and electro-optical and infrared cameras.
And while the Navy could buy them from the Air Force, they’re quite a bit larger than an E-2D. Back to the drawing board. And it’s an important problem because the amphibious assault ships, which look a lot like other nation’s aircraft carriers can’t protect themselves adequately without an E-2D (or land based support from aircraft such as the Global Hawk). That means that the forward deployed ships that are the backbone of the New Marine Corp’s mobility needs an aircraft carrier (CVN) in the area.
Beltway bandits propose distributed intelligence from swarms of smaller drone aircraft (at five times the cost) and other unproved systems that work so long as the link is up. But it’s simply not there. And so long as the navy is wedded to the E-2D (and I’m not suggesting that it’s a bad thing), they’ll need big – or really big, nuclear powered aircraft carriers.
Fleet’s not in yet. Support personnel have to do something while they wait.
Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, USS Bainbridge fires a Mark 45, five-inch rifle during a live-fire exercise.
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