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The Maginot Line of 2016

 
unsmoked
 
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unsmoked
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13 June 2016 10:33
 

Everyone must know that these Orlando, San Bernardino style attacks are going to continue.  Within a few years or sooner, terrorists will have weapons of mass destruction.  In fact, they already have them.  How long before they trickle down to the lone wolves? 

Is our trillion dollar military budget the Maginot Line of 2016?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maginot_Line

[ Edited: 13 June 2016 10:36 by unsmoked]
 
 
Cheshire Cat
 
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13 June 2016 11:09
 

I’ve been waiting for, and dreading, the first lethal drone strike made here in the United States by either terrorists or a lone psychopath.

It’s just a question of time.

 
 
Twissel
 
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Twissel
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13 June 2016 11:41
 

there has been a lot of brain-power wasted on thinking about drone attacks. Drones are, in one word, irrelevant as a security concern against the US homeland.

Why?
all commercially available drones are to weak to carry explosives to any significant degree. And even if you make them more powerful, the fact that they are flying means that most of the blast would be directed upwards, making them much less harmful then, say, a backpack.
Military-rated drones would have to be flown in from abroad. This is a problem both of range and detection: they wouldn’t get far into the US, and they would be spotted. A discovered drone is trivially easy to shoot down, or even just jam.

 
 
Dennis Campbell
 
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13 June 2016 12:22
 

Agree that however delivered more massive attacks are quite likely.

 
 
Poldano
 
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13 June 2016 19:52
 

Who needs high technology when a truckload of ANFO is so easy to acquire and move around?

Etc., etc.

The Game of Nations is still being played, and traditional military forces are needed to play it. Widespread terrorism is only possible because of the geographical and political nooks and crannies brought about that game.

 
 
unsmoked
 
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14 June 2016 10:54
 
Twissel - 13 June 2016 11:41 AM

there has been a lot of brain-power wasted on thinking about drone attacks. Drones are, in one word, irrelevant as a security concern against the US homeland.

Why?
all commercially available drones are to weak to carry explosives to any significant degree. And even if you make them more powerful, the fact that they are flying means that most of the blast would be directed upwards, making them much less harmful then, say, a backpack.
Military-rated drones would have to be flown in from abroad. This is a problem both of range and detection: they wouldn’t get far into the US, and they would be spotted. A discovered drone is trivially easy to shoot down, or even just jam.

If Homeland Security thinks like this, they need me to work for them.  It’s impossible to discuss this for fear of giving a lone-wolf-psychopath an idea.  I trust the security agencies have inventive imaginations.  The danger of these ‘toys’ around airports is well publicized, but that’s the tip of the iceberg.

 

 
 
Dennis Campbell
 
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14 June 2016 13:08
 

Don’t need drones.  Folks dedicated to strike us can use suicide bombs easily, no high tech needed.  I do fear that one consequence will be a less permissive border, no matter who is elected this year.

 
 
jdrnd
 
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14 June 2016 14:57
 

Where is God when you need him?

 
Dennis Campbell
 
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14 June 2016 16:43
 
jdrnd - 14 June 2016 02:57 PM

Where is God when you need him?

Otherwise busy on more important issues.  Stop whining!

 
 
unsmoked
 
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15 June 2016 09:52
 
Dennis Campbell - 14 June 2016 04:43 PM
jdrnd - 14 June 2016 02:57 PM

Where is God when you need him?

Otherwise busy on more important issues.  Stop whining!

He’s busy messing with that giant gizmo on the Swiss-French border so we can’t figure out what all this is.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/supersymmetry-and-the-crisis-in-physics/

[ Edited: 15 June 2016 09:56 by unsmoked]
 
 
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16 June 2016 09:48
 
Dennis Campbell - 14 June 2016 01:08 PM

Don’t need drones.  Folks dedicated to strike us can use suicide bombs easily, no high tech needed.  I do fear that one consequence will be a less permissive border, no matter who is elected this year.

In fact, ‘folks dedicated to strike us’ don’t need to do anything except sit back and watch the devastating consequences of our own folly.  While our military budget of $600 billion dwarfs other military budgets ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_military_expenditures ) compare it to what we spend to mitigate the threat of global warming, ocean acidification, drought, air and water pollution, overuse and misuse of antibiotics leaving us defenseless against superbugs etc. etc.

I’m sure it’s more than the Army Corp of Engineers who knows that coastal cities are going to be flooded, to name just one threat of disaster that will cause far more grief than any terrorist attack.  Yet, here we have the controlling party in our government, and their presidential candidate, denying that the threat even exists. 

 

 
 
unsmoked
 
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20 June 2016 10:26
 

From the June 2016 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN - ‘Rules for Cyberwar - Nations must agree on penalties with sharp teeth to discourage state-sponsored cyberattacks’:

“The world is at war.  Some might quibble with the characterization of malicious hacking as warfare, preferring phrases such as “cyberespionage” or “cyberconflict.”  But when governments, industry and individuals are under constant attack by antagonists from all corners of the globe - marauders who use the Internet to steal vital information, sabotage critical operations and recruit terrorists - this means war.  It is high time for an internationally coordinated response.”  (end quote)

Is ISIS rich enough to sponsor anything like the Stuxnet or Duqu malware attacks?  Do we have critical ‘soft targets’ with no defenses?  I read somewhere that in 1939 the Polish cavalry charged Hitler’s Panzar IV’s.

 
 
Poldano
 
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20 June 2016 20:49
 
unsmoked - 20 June 2016 10:26 AM

From the June 2016 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN - ‘Rules for Cyberwar - Nations must agree on penalties with sharp teeth to discourage state-sponsored cyberattacks’:

“The world is at war.  Some might quibble with the characterization of malicious hacking as warfare, preferring phrases such as “cyberespionage” or “cyberconflict.”  But when governments, industry and individuals are under constant attack by antagonists from all corners of the globe - marauders who use the Internet to steal vital information, sabotage critical operations and recruit terrorists - this means war.  It is high time for an internationally coordinated response.”  (end quote)

Is ISIS rich enough to sponsor anything like the Stuxnet or Duqu malware attacks?  Do we have critical ‘soft targets’ with no defenses?  I read somewhere that in 1939 the Polish cavalry charged Hitler’s Panzar IV’s.

Cyberattacks are likely to be the way the next world war is fought. It’s probably preferable to WMD’s. Because it can be effective at a relatively low cost, states are not likely to agree in good faith to regulate it. They may sign treaties and engage in talk, but they are not going to stop the activities, and will use the difficulty of detection and identification of source as ways to avoid any substantive penalties. It’s all spy-versus-spy after all, and whose spy is going to be more believable?

 
 
unsmoked
 
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21 June 2016 10:16
 

The Maginot Line of 2016

From the June 2016 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN:

Climate change fueled the beginning of Syria’s civil war by making a regional drought deeper and longer.  That drought, when combined with the government’s refusal to deal with crop failures and livestock deaths, pushed hundreds of thousands of people to migrate from their farms into cities such as Aleppo and Raqqa.  Once protests began in the country in early 2011, many people with little to lose and resentment toward the government joined in.  The unrest turned to civil war when the Syrian government started shooting protesters, and the civil war allowed ISIS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, to rise, terrorizing the world.”  (end quote)

Is it possible that the ruling political party in the U.S. doesn’t know that a worldwide human-caused disaster (global warming) is now well underway and is now unstoppable?  Does the ruling party of the U.S. know that their response to this juggernaut is to fan the flames by burning more fossil fuels this year than last? - to underfund projects like geothermal, wind and solar power - projects that could help mitigate the growing threat?

This brings to mind the time when Henry Ford Sr. was sending Hitler $50,000 as a birthday present every year, and publishing anti-Semitic tracts for distribution to all his factory workers.

(headline on the cover of the June 2016 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN - ‘Looming Security Threat: Climate Change’)

 
 
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21 June 2016 18:44
 
unsmoked - 21 June 2016 10:16 AM

...

Is it possible that the ruling political party in the U.S. doesn’t know that a worldwide human-caused disaster (global warming) is now well underway and is now unstoppable?  Does the ruling party of the U.S. know that their response to this juggernaut is to fan the flames by burning more fossil fuels this year than last? - to underfund projects like geothermal, wind and solar power - projects that could help mitigate the growing threat?

...

Being politicians, they don’t have to know anything; they just have to be able to argue convincingly enough to persuade a majority of people to vote for them.

The the majority of powers behind the politicians almost certainly know of the risk. They either don’t care—because they figure they can personally buy their way out of any personal inconveniences that may result—or they believe they can’t act any other way—because the benefits obtained from acting otherwise are not sufficient to exceed their individual Nash Equilibrium thresholds.

 
 
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22 June 2016 12:11
 
Poldano - 21 June 2016 06:44 PM
unsmoked - 21 June 2016 10:16 AM

...

Is it possible that the ruling political party in the U.S. doesn’t know that a worldwide human-caused disaster (global warming) is now well underway and is now unstoppable?  Does the ruling party of the U.S. know that their response to this juggernaut is to fan the flames by burning more fossil fuels this year than last? - to underfund projects like geothermal, wind and solar power - projects that could help mitigate the growing threat?

...

Being politicians, they don’t have to know anything; they just have to be able to argue convincingly enough to persuade a majority of people to vote for them.

The the majority of powers behind the politicians almost certainly know of the risk. They either don’t care—because they figure they can personally buy their way out of any personal inconveniences that may result—or they believe they can’t act any other way—because the benefits obtained from acting otherwise are not sufficient to exceed their individual Nash Equilibrium thresholds.

The Maginot Line of 2016

Within the next 30 years the population of Africa will double from 1.2 billion today, to 2.4 billion by 2050.

In Niger, where the GDP is less than $1 per day, the average number of children a woman is likely to have is more than 7.  http://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2016/jan/11/population-growth-in-africa-grasping-the-scale-of-the-challenge

Can we even imagine the new waves of desperate people trying to cross the Mediterranean to reach Europe?  The destabilization and conflict this will cause?  The new opportunities for ISIS to gain recruits and spread its influence?

Why can’t a few billion dollars be taken from the annual U.S. military budget of $600 billion to help the women of Third World Africa with family planning - help they desperately want and need?  Think of the starvation, the genocide, the refugee crises, the boat-people disasters, the terrorist threats such help would prevent. 

Why can’t the U.S. allocate funds to help these women?  Surely American politicians aren’t Christian fundamentalists, or subject to fundamentalist voters?  Surely American politicians don’t think that more military spending is going to quell this growing human disaster? 

As Sam Harris writes, “The beliefs of conservative Christians now exert an extraordinary influence over our national discourse - in our courts, in our schools, and in every branch of government . . . If our worldview were put to a vote, notions of “intelligent design” would defeat the science of biology by nearly three to one.”

How about the science of starvation, and playing into the hands of ISIS?  Teach Third World people that the way to plan a sustainable family is by practicing sexual abstinence?

Population of Africa in 1980 - 477 million

Population of Africa in 2016 - 1.2 billion

Population of Africa in 2050 - 2.4 billion

 

 
 
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