What a surprise - now we have to send in troops over the y2k and Martial Law rollovers...greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
Think about it... it's a pretty obvious diversion, but effective...
"Military strategists admit failure in "unwinnable" Kosovo air war
By DOUG THOMPSON
As military strategists concede the war in Kosovo may be unwinnable, the Pentagon is running low on its supply of cruise missiles.
Retired Gen. Colin Powell joined the chorus of those who said the war can't be won in the air, telling a audience at Virginia Tech Tuesday the U.S. and NATO will have to use ground troops if they want to win.
And the Pentagon is reluctantly admitting that things haven't gone as expected.
"I think right now, it is difficult to say that we have prevented one act of brutality at this stage," Defense Department spokesman Kenneth Bacon told reporters Tuesday.
In fact, military planners say that after six days of strikes, the bombing has, at best, inflicted only "minimal damage" on Yugoslavian military sites.
And the US is running out of its primary weapon -- cruise missiles.
Before the latest NATO strikes over Kosovo and Serbia, the Air Force was down to 150 cruise missiles carrying conventional warheads. At least 30 have been launched since then. The Navy has more than 2,000 but is using them up at a faster rate. No cruise missile production line is in operation.
``The stocks of air-launched cruise missiles are limited, and it's something we're addressing,'' Bacon said Tuesday.
The dwindling supply is ``something we do worry about,'' he said. ``We have a supply now but it won't last forever. But we certainly have enough to continue striking important targets.''
Even more worrisome than the missile shortage, however, is the growing realization that after a week of massive bombing raids, NATO and US forces are no closer to achieving their goal of stopping the "ethnic cleansing."The atrocities have increased and military planners are now admitting the war may be based on an "unwinnable" strategy.
"The US and NATO entered this conflict without a sound strategy and now they're paying for it," says retired Air Force General Matthew Higgins. "When you fight a war for political reasons, without a sound military plan, you end up with a conflict you can't win."
At the Pentagon, military strategists admit privately they were pushed into the Kosovo campaign by a President eager to prove his manhood and divert attention away from the many scandals that have plagued his administration.
"This is President Clinton's war," one high ranking officer says, "and we all know how much military experience the President has."
The Kosovo conflict has severely strained already fragile relationships between Clinton and the military command structure. Senior Pentagon officials are constantly reminding their junior officers to control their distrust and avoid open derision of the President.
"We look like a bunch of goddamned idiots because we let an idiot push us into this thing," one high ranking officer said bitterly Tuesday night.
Gen. Higgins agreed.
"This is a classic screwup," he said. "There's no other way to put it. The cruise missile situation is just one indication of how bad this whole mess is."
The Air Force announced Tuesday that the Office of Management and Budget was permitting it to convert 92 nuclear-tipped cruise missiles into conventional air-launched cruise missiles, or CALCMs. The $51 million program will require congressional approval. The last such nuclear-to-conventional conversions rolled off the line in 1993 and the last time a new air-launched cruise missile was delivered was 1986. The prime contractor was Boeing Co.
The Navy, meanwhile, is seeking a $113 million emergency appropriation to convert 324 Tomahawk cruise missiles to the latest model with upgraded guidance and a conventional blast warhead. Raytheon Co. closed its Tucson, Ariz., production line in January after delivering the last of the new Tomahawks to the Navy.
``We continue to manage the inventory very closely and we will meet all of our operational requirements,'' said Navy Lt. Meghan Mariman.
In an era in which aversion to casualties tops the list of military priorities, cruise missiles have increasingly become Pentagon planners' preferred weapon. But Pentagon purchasing has lagged behind use of the weapons.
The Pentagon was developing a successor to the conventional air-launched cruise missile, but canceled it in December 1994 due to spiraling costs.
Air power analysts have been warning Pentagon planners for at least a decade to buy more conventional cruise missiles for use in limited conflicts in which presidents would want to project power without risking losing a pilot, said David Ochmanek, a Rand Corp. analyst.
``The good news is, as analysts, we've been vindicated on our position,'' Ochmanek said. ``The bad news is we didn't convince anybody.''
A single Air Force B-52, flying outside enemy territory -- as far as 1,500 miles from its target -- can launch 8 CALCMs from its bomb bay and a dozen more from pods under each wing. Each missile carries a 3,000-pound conventional warhead. Navy ships and submarines as far as 1,350 miles from a land target can launch Tomahawks carrying a 1,000-pound conventional warhead.
Both weapons are satellite guided, meaning they can operate at night and in foul weather. They are, in essence, pilotless jet aircraft with small retractable wings and computerized guidance systems.
``Weather right now is in fact a factor,'' Bacon said of the Yugoslav operations. Of the three available weapons that give the Pentagon all-weather striking capability, Bacon said, two are the cruise missiles. The radar-evading B-2 bomber with satellite-guided bombs is the third.
But cruise missiles are also expensive -- the Tomahawks cost more than $1 million each. CALCMs, in current-year dollars, cost $1.9 million.
In an illustration of how cruise missiles have become an increasing part of U.S. military operations, during the six-week air campaign over Iraq in the Persian Gulf War, the Navy fired 288 Tomahawks. Last December, in only four days of air strikes on Iraq, the Navy launched more than 300 Tomahawks. The Air Forced fired off 90 in last December's ``Operation Desert Fox,'' using up nearly 40 percent of the Air Force inventory in one strike.
For the longer term, the Navy is pushing to develop a new weapon called the ``Tactical Tomahawk,'' which will be entirely re-engineered and will cost about $750,000 each. The Navy wants to buy 1,353 over five years. But the weapon won't be ready until at least 2003.
The Navy and Air Force are working together on the air-launched Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile, or JASSM, a $3 billion cruise missile program slated to produce at least 2,400 missiles. Full scale production is set to begin in 2002. The program was rushed into existence in 1996 after the Pentagon canceled the planned successor to the CALCM.
Although both CALCMs and Tomahawks were first designed as nuclear weapons, Navy interest in cruise missiles was sparked by Egypt's use of a Soviet-made Styx cruise missile to sink the Israeli destroyer Elath during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. The Air Force's inventory of conventional cruise missiles consists of converted nuclear-tipped missiles.
The only foreign country allowed to buy U.S. cruise missiles is Britain, which bought 65 Tomahawks in November for use in submarines.
--The Associated Press contributed to this report"
-- Andy (2000EOD@prodigy.net), April 01, 1999
Now throw in the wild card, the Russians, and see how further the pre- y2k water can get muddied up... remember the use 'em or lose 'em threads a ways back???
After reading this - ask yourself how Russia will contain it's nuclear plants with it's fix on failure strategy - the classic poisonfire scenario come true...
Pay attention to the last paragraph.
"This is from CBN (March 25).
* * * * * * * * * * * * *
. . . When Russians rejected communism, no one told them their new leaders would loot the nation; that their living standards would fall to Third World levels, or that the promises of democracy would be empty words. But the Russian dream of democracy is dying.
Analyst Paul Goble says American leaders kid themselves if they think Russia is a functioning state.
"It's a failed state," says Goble. "It's much more like the Congo or Somalia. The Russian government doesn't have effective control over its nuclear weapons. The Russian government doesn't have effective control over its tax system. The Russian government doesn't have effective control over its economy. There is no law; there are no forces maintaining order. So what you have is chaos."
A few things are booming in Russia -- crime, for instance. One of the highest crime rate estimates is two crimes per capita per year -- that's 300 million. But only a fraction are reported. . . .
The Mafia is ruthless against rival gangs, or against officials who refuse bribes. Officer Andrei Pashkevick says police corruption is a big problem.
"Some criminal groups are very strong, not because of their weapons, but because of their connections with state offices and authorities," he says. "And it's harder to fight this kind of crime."
And crime pays in Russia. Russian mobsters, robber capitalists and corrupt officials are among the richest people anywhere in the world.
"What the new rich in Russia have done is to take wealth that was created in Soviet times, put it in their own pockets, value strip it, sell off parts, ship the money they get offshore," says Goble. "As a result, last year the capital stock of the Russian Federation fell by six percent."
Russia's gross national product is now close to five percent of the United States' GNP and going backward. . . .
Olga Vlasova, a college-educated social worker, must support herself, an eight-year-old girl, and a teenage boy on less than $20 a month. She doesn't live as much as she survives.
"I can't afford clothes or shoes for the children, because all the money I make I spend on food. I try not to show the children how difficult it is to make the ends meet -- to show them how hard it is," she says. "And I try to borrow money from others and try not to let the children think about it and suffer."
Her family lives and sleeps in one room, sharing a kitchen and bathroom with another family. Olga says her life is worse now than before the revolution. And living standards are highest in Moscow.
To see how most Russians live, you have to go outside of Moscow, to the little villages like Pronskoye. There's no heat, no running water, no telephone ... and there's not very much hope either. . . .
There's almost no money in the countryside. Almost half of all transactions in Russia are bartered. Public health is a disaster. Because of pollution, disease, and abortion complications, as many as one third of all Russian adults may be sterile. Deaths outnumber births so much that Russia's population has been shrinking by almost a million people per year.
"This is the worst demographic disaster to any major society in modern times, outside times of war," says Goble. "We're talking about a decline of life expectancy of Russian men of eight years in the last decade, something that has never happened to any country ever, as far as we know, in peace time."
And diseases are exploding.
"Children in Russia are dying of diseases that we have vaccines against," says Goble. "Diphtheria, mumps, measles --- but Russian parents do not choose to get their children vaccinated because were they to, they would have to go into doctors' offices where the average disposable syringe is probably used more than a hundred times. And the risk of a child getting a disease from multiple-use needles is far greater than the risk of getting a disease if you don't get them vaccinated."
Russia now has so many problems that some are calling the crumbling nation's situation hopeless.
"Nothing works," says Cohen. "Economic policy is not working. Budget is not working. Industry is falling apart."
And at the heart of Russia's problems is a crisis of morality, according to Father Gleb Yakunin, a famous human rights activist.
"It doesn't matter what economic reforms we do, and how hard we try to stabilize the situation," says Yakunin. "No matter what Prime Minister Primakov does, or no matter now much help we get from the IMF or international financial organizations, we'll still have an economic crisis until people stop stealing." . . . .
"This is the first time a state this large and this powerful has failed," says Goble.
"And again, the danger of that," says Cohen, "is that while you're falling behind and becoming impoverished and frustrated, and you have all these nuclear weapons, what are you going to do about it?"
-- Andy (2000EOD@prodigy.net), April 01, 1999.
Hi Andy ~~ could you give the URL for the first report you copied to this thread? I read the second, but can't find the first. Thanx
-- Leska (email@example.com), April 01, 1999.
>``The good news is, as analysts, we've been vindicated on our position,'' Ochmanek said. ``The bad news is we didn't convince anybody.''
Reminds me of when I told my manager about our Y2k problem in 1979...
-- No Spam Please (No_Spam_Please@anon_ymous.com), April 01, 1999.
Hi Leska - it came from Capitol Blue, on the Sightings On The Radio website.
No Spam - Touche old chap!
If you want to know what's going on check out this link - you will need realplayer:-
Click on the March 29th link - all will be revealed...
-- Andy (2000EOD@prodigy.net), April 01, 1999.
""I think right now, it is difficult to say that we have prevented one act of brutality at this stage," Defense Department spokesman Kenneth Bacon told reporters Tuesday."
Well, it occurs to me that the U.S. *could* have prevented a lot of brutality by not sending cruise missiles into residential areas.
What f***ing hypocrites we have in Washington...
-- sparks (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 01, 1999.
Every bomb we drop is a victory for hatred. But this was all planned: "pressure is mounting on Clinton to use ground troops." NBC/General Electric last night reported that we would start using attack helicopters. Never have I heard the war drums beaten so vigorously....so...manfully. They will keep showing the doe-eyed refugees until the last member of the herd is frothing for blood. The rhetoric is astonishing: "we must punish Milosevic!" Who died and left us judge, jury and executioner? I think events are spinning out of control, by design. As far as Russia, the parallels with Weimar, hyperinflated Germany are everywhere. They need a strong leader (think Alexander Lebed) to 'fix' things. All of us, whether slack-jawed dupe or astute between-the line types, are being sucked into a remorseless vortex. Pray for an Easter cease-fire, and for wiser heads to prevail.
-- Spidey (email@example.com), April 02, 1999.
Not gonna happen Spidey - an agenda is being played out here - do listen to the Jeff Rense/David Icke link - appreciate your comments.
-- Andy (2000EOD@prodigy.net), April 02, 1999.