TOC Ready Room 22 November 2022: Drive-by edition; Poland missile impact, Biden FBI/Israel, Special Counsel and other Trump

What’s wrong and right with the world.

Increasingly, I agree with those who say we need an “audit” of U.S. support to Ukraine.  I put “audit” in quotation marks because a mere audit of the tens of billions flowing to Ukraine – and to military contractors – won’t get the job done.  What’s needed is a wholesale policy scrub of the Biden administration’s handling of the problem.

As always, I begin by affirming that the U.S. needs to support a fight to reverse and end Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.  The U.S. shouldn’t have direct military engagement in the fight, nor should NATO.

But it matters what strategy we’re supporting and how military assistance to Ukraine is executed.

It matters at least as much how the fight in Ukraine is affecting NATO’s security conditions, posture, and unity. Continue reading “TOC Ready Room 22 November 2022: Drive-by edition; Poland missile impact, Biden FBI/Israel, Special Counsel and other Trump”

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U.S. bombers to Australia: New deployment, old issue

There was a better answer than this.

In 2016, I wrote about the recent purchase by a China-based company of a 99-year lease on parts of the port of Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory.  The company, Landbridge, would execute the terms of the lease, which included port operations and a commercial fuel depot at a location close to where the U.S. Marines are deployed to Darwin, through an Australian subsidiary set up for the purpose.

Landbridge has connections to the Communist Party through its interactions with government officials in its homebase of Rizhao, a port city in Shandong Province.  The company’s owner, Ye Cheng, has also referred to Landbridge’s port lease in Darwin as Landbridge’s participation in Xi Jinping’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative – certainly not evidence of detachment by the company from the Party.  One Belt, One Road is a government project, not the vision of Chinese “private” industry (to the extent there ever was such a thing, or still could be a year on from the Xi regime’s comprehensive 2021 business crackdown).

When the Landbridge deal was being negotiated, Continue reading “U.S. bombers to Australia: New deployment, old issue”

TOC Ready Room 26 October 2022: 101st Airborne in Romania; Kanye, China, and other wonders

What’s wrong and right with Russia-Ukraine, China and computers, and Ye.

This will be a rough-and-ready Ready Room, intended to spray a few current topics out there without going in-depth on any of them.  I really mean it this time, so throw rotten fruit if you catch a glimpse of over-analysis out here in the heathery rough.

The first topic is the headline teaser:  deployment of the U.S. 101st Airborne to Europe.  CBS did a segment this past week in which its crew accompanied soldiers of the 101st on field activities in Romania, just “a few miles” from the border of Ukraine.

A great deal was made of the point that the 101st hasn’t deployed to Europe since World War II. Continue reading “TOC Ready Room 26 October 2022: 101st Airborne in Romania; Kanye, China, and other wonders”

TOC Ready Room 6 October 2022: Ukraine; or, the world in a pickle

What wrong and right with the world; Ukraine update.

This won’t be a thematically unified post, which is why it’s being put up as a Ready Room.

In some ways, public dialogue on weighty matters is getting sillier and sillier, to the point that one can’t even join the discussion because the premises are so off that there’s no discussing it sensibly.  (I’ve written about this Babel-ization of public communication before, going back to Trump’s first year in office and even prior to that.  Rounds of ritual chanting have largely taken the place of thoughtful speech in the mainstream media and much of standard politics.  The Left is about nothing but this now – people who stray from the model are actively punished –  and although there are still parsable sentences and paragraph-length thought-packages coming from the Right, the pattern is present there as well. Continue reading “TOC Ready Room 6 October 2022: Ukraine; or, the world in a pickle”

Uranium jerky: Angle on Ukraine (Part VII)

Things that make you go, Hmmm.

Back in the fall of 2020, I published a series of six articles* under the subject “Uranium Jerky” (explanation in the first article), taking note of the extraordinary connection of the events recounted in them to the Obama administration and – among other things – the high-profile Clinton-involved developments of the time, including the sale of Uranium One to the Russians.

One of those events was Goldman Sachs’s unique, remarkable decision, announced on 20 January 2009, that it would become a buyer of and dealer in physical uranium.  It proceeded to do so, and to this day has not shed that role, although the company began suggesting it would do so under congressional pressure at least seven years ago.

I’m still not sure most readers fully grasp the significance of a firm like Goldman Sachs, with little visibility or transparent exposure to observers of the uranium industry, owning and moving around thousands of tons of uranium. Continue reading “Uranium jerky: Angle on Ukraine (Part VII)”