Spent shell casings pile up as a soldier fires his weapon during a U.S. Army weapons qualification. (U.S. Army/Sgt. Roman Hale – Flickr)
Wednesday, April 15, 2020
The bullets post is intended to provide a wide variety of topics from multiple sources to broaden your base of reading. I understand that we simply do not have enough time to check multiple sources for information so I will look at multiple sources and provide a quick summary of each article. If you are interested, click on the article and read it, if not, breeze right past and look for something that catches your eye or imagination. It is my belief that a Cognitive Warrior should be well versed in many topics and these bullet posts are a way to provide that expanded base of knowledge in a quick and easy format. Anyway, on to the bullets….
- Bill Roggio and Caleb Weiss over at the Long War Journal take a look at Hakeemullah Mehsud, which exposes Afghan Taliban ties to Al Qaeda. They describe the “Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan (TTP) highlights the often overlooked relationship between the Afghan Taliban, its Pakistani brothers, and al Qaeda, and Pakistan’s complicity in propping up terror networks.” Bill and Caleb take a deep dive into the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan tribute video of its former leader Hakeemullah Mehsud.
The video lionizes Mehsud as a martyr of the jihad and chronicles his life fighting alongside both Al Qaeda and Afghan Taliban fighters, in particular Mullah Dadullah in Helmand Province. The video chronicles how Mehsud was originally rejected service to the Taliban by being too young, being detained at Guantanamo Bay and returning to the Jihad. The video highlights how this Pakistani Taliban fighter joined the Afghan Taliban in many of the major battles eventually rising to emir.
“The TTP leader can be seen alongside Abu Dujana al Khurasani, the perpretator of that suicide bombing, which left seven CIA officers, one Jordanian intelligence officer, and one Afghan intelligence officer dead.
The Camp Chapman attack highlights the incestuous relationship between Al Qaeda and the Pakistani and Afghan Taliban. The attack took place in Khost which is dominated by the Haqqani Network. The TTP and Al Qaeda could not have conducted this attack without the permission and support of the Haqqanis.”
Honestly, this article probably deserves its own post but I will hang it here just to get it in-front of you.
- Ahmad Massoud, a politician in Panjshir, Afghanistan, writes in the New York Times about What Is Missing From Afghan Peace Talks. He states that, “A just political order in Afghanistan needs decentralization of power and an equitable distribution of resources among its people.”
After four decades of warfighting, the Afghanistan people are investing hope in a peace solution that may finally end the decades of fighting. However, the Taliban are seeking to continue a “highly centralized political and administrative system that concentrates power and financial resources in the office of the president with little accountability.” And “The lack of an institutional power-sharing arrangement between Kabul and the provinces, and the winner-takes-all system in the central government drive a zealous competition for the presidency.”
Mr. Masoud makes the case for a Federalist style of government that there should be a pretty good model for…. Anyway, it is pretty interesting if you have been following the peace talks.
- Also at the New York Times Edward Wong and Paul Mozur write about how China’s ‘Donation Diplomacy’ Raises Tensions With U.S.. Now you may need to start a free account with them to read the article but it’s free! They state: “New regulations in China are delaying its shipments of medical supplies around the world. And some American officials worry accepting donated gear helps China’s propaganda efforts.”
- Sam LaGrone at USNI News reports the Truman Strike Group Will Stay at Sea Until Carrier Nimitz Ready to Deploy. According to Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, “In order to avoid repeating a similar COVID-19 outbreak that sidelined aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) in Guam, the Pentagon and the Navy decided this week to keep surge carrier forces at sea.”
- Over at Foreign Affairs Eric Edelman and Ray Takeyh write about The Next Iranian Revolution and Why Washington Should Seek Regime Change. It’s premium content so I will only include this line: “That is why regime change is not a radical or reckless idea but the most pragmatic and effective goal for U.S. policy toward Iran—indeed, it is the only objective that has any chance of meaningfully reducing the Iranian threat.”
- Meanwhile, Daniel Larison over at The American Conservative argues that Iran Is Not Ours to ‘Steer’ and Regime Change is Wrong, both of which directly rebuke the Foreign Affairs article by Edelman and Takeyh. I will just leave both of these here without adding any comment except that Larison vehemently disagrees.
- Also on the The American Conservative, George D. O’Neill Jr. writes that, “Domestic production is a national security issue: Just see how much of our Pentagon procurement depends on Chinese components” in Make America Defend Itself Again. A key section from the article states:
“The American military is at risk, too.China manufactures a number of key inputs for our missiles, satellites and fighter jets. Our ability to fight a war depends on whether Chinese companies are willing to sell us components we need for our weapons systems. We have lost so much of our industry the Pentagon can’t obtain these parts domestically.
- Jon Harper with National Defense writes about how the coronavirus has rattled the defense industrial base by forcing them “to take action to mitigate the impact on major programs and the supply chain.” According to Hawk Carlisle, president and CEO of the National Defense Industrial Association, ““The short-term impact is a restriction on the supply chain. In many cases, an inability to deliver on a contract, deliver on capabilities, just because you’re at a slower pace and you have to follow all the [safety] procedures … so you can’t do things as rapidly,”” This is a very good article about the challenges that everyone in the defense industry has been impacted. Long story short, there could be delays and no one knows how longs.
- Rebeccah L. Heinrichs with Real Clear Defense also writes about The PLA’s Exploitation of the Coronavirus Pandemic. She identifies the supply chain issues related to China and also writes how deterring China must continue in spite of the virus. She noted:
“China has not slowed down provocative, offensive military maneuvers. Beijing just days ago conducted naval drills near Taiwan’s shores, has continued tobuzz Taiwan’s airspace, it sank a Vietnamese fishing vessel in international waters, and according to State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus, the Chinese government has continued to make developments on military bases China built on reefs and islands on which it erroneously claims sovereignty.”
- Over on The Drive you can check a Canadian Frigate Painted In World War II Era Dazzle Camouflage and how Modern Submarine Torpedo Attacks Are Nothing Like What You See In The Movies.
- Popular Mechanics brings you three articles titled:
Breaking Down the Four Most Common Narcosubs noting that, “As of today, the @USNavy and @USCG have already seized 2,100KG of cocaine headed for America using the strategy announced one week ago at the direction of the @POTUS.”
The Army Is Trying To Replace the Bradley Fighting Vehicle. Again. “Undeterred by its most recent failure, the U.S. Army announced a new effort to replace the Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle.” And…
The Army Is Building Drones That Can Be Fired From Grenade Launchers “Engineers at the U.S. Army’s Aberdeen Proving Ground are working on a small drone capable of being shot from the service’s new grenade launcher. The drone, fired from the M320 grenade launcher, could loiter over the battlefield for more than an hour, allowing troops to locate enemies without endangering themselves. The drone would effectively give groups of two or three soldiers their own spy aircraft.” I have no idea how I would use it, but I want one.
I hope that one of the above articles has piqued your interest. If you have additional sources that I have not linked too or other interesting articles that you think others should discuss please link them in the comments.