Monday, September 10, 2012

9/11, reflections, are we safer? No.

On September 11, 2001, the "Pearl Harbor" event of our lives took place. Those who were cognizant of what happened, who saw it, experience it, and those who have sacrificed to preserve our Republic in the years since and those against whom we expressed our national angst all recognize that on that day, the world changed. For awhile, the sleeping giant was again awakened. And, like their WWII German and Japanese counterparts, the militant factions of Islam soon understood the military might of the United States knows no equal.

Unfortunately, we were using our technological superiority and the superior training and equipment of our troops on basically feudal tribal cultures with a low level of technology.

Domestically, as a result of the nature of the infiltration of our commercial aviation by the terrorists, mainly from Saudi Arabia, and all from Arab Islamic countries, a new and unsettling addition was made to our national security. The Patriot Act supported by President George Bush as part of his national security initiative post 9-11 created a concern regarding our constitutional protections from unlawful search and seizure, arrest, and interference with our internal and international travel. President Bush's initiative included the creation of a new Homeland Security Department and the Transportation Security Agency within the FAA. The DHS and TSA were the direct result of the terrorist attacks that brought down the World Trade Center towers in NYC on September 11, 2001. Since 9-11, both have grown dramatically, in both scope of their missions and the size of the bureaucracy.

The TSA has been under steady criticism from the flying public for its outrageous violation of traveling Americans' 4th, 9th, and 14th Amendment rights. Property is seized without recompense and due process. The citizen is grotesquely violated in a manner that in any other context would result in the arrest of the TSA agent for sexual molestation at the very least, and rape at worst. Worse, the TSA has implemented technologies for the search of a person using microwave radiation that has been heavily criticized by physicists and physicians associations nationwide. There is a serious question as to the long term effect of the low level radiation upon the skin. Worse for the TSA is a practice of ignoring the only segment of the flying population whose religion is at the root of the 9-11 attacks. Political correctness prevents the TSA from focusing upon the estimated 5% of the flying public that is Muslim. It is not uncommon to see Muslim men and women in full ethnic garb being passed through with a cursory search, while older Americans, including the disabled and very young are subjected to the most invasive and embarrassing affronts to their personal dignity in violation of their constitutional rights. The record of the TSA with respect to stopping terrorists is highly questionable, as they have failed test after test involving smuggled weapons and chemicals simulating explosives.

What is it that the TSA really does other than condition the American public to allow the suspension of their civil rights without proper notification of arrest and the intent to search? The TSA is a direct threat to our liberties that is far more serious and insidious than the Patriot Acts' secret tribunals for issuing warrants to conduct surveillance upon Americans. The TSA has now expanded its jurisdiction into non-aviation venues of travel, including highway and large attendance events held in local jurisdictions. So much for the freedom of unrestricted travel.

As was stated so sagely by Benjamin Franklin during the debates on the drafting of the Constitution: "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither safety nor liberty."

The Department of Homeland Security became a huge vacuum that swept up all of the federal law enforcement, including Customs and the Border Patrol. The outcome has been a massive bureaucracy that has confused, impeded, and demonstrated that an agency with powers not enumerated in the Constitution may have been excluded for a reason. There is no Constitutional basis for the federal DHS.

On the state level, the 50 states have followed suit and created a state namesake for their state version of DHS. These state agencies became largely conduits for funneling billions of dollars of federal tax dollars to local communities to allegedly improve their public safety agencies' communications, provide for updated equipment, and to provide for community training for emergencies through the Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) concept, and for providing increased fire and rescue equipment. Unfortunately, in too many cases, the money went for monuments to . . . politicians in the form of statues, parks and buildings having nothing to do with improving disaster response.

In Alaska, the Division of Emergency Services became the Division of Alaska Homeland Security and Emergency Services. The additional alphabet soup did not increase the effectiveness or efficiency of the idea of making Alaskans safer. It did however, become a conduit for disbursing federal DHS grants to local communities. And, that it has done since it was renamed. The yearly grant amounts supplied by the federal DHS to be distributed by the State have been as high as $18,000,000 to this year's $9,500,000. For 2012-2017, the yearly State grant amount is set at $9,500,000.

For the $10s of millions received yearly by Alaska local governments through the DHS grant program, there are still municipal police and fire agencies with radios that cannot communicate with the Alaska State Troopers or neighboring communities. By contrast, the Juneau Fire Department was a focus of one New York Times article in 2006 that investigated the use of the DHS grants. As the fireman in Juneau stated, they had bought so much new equipment, that they had no idea how they were going to use it, as training and manpower to use it were now the issues. Too much of a good thing is still too much.

Interestingly enough, given the emphasis on WMD threats, the potential for nuclear first strikes by Iran, China, North Korea and Russia, the Alaska Dept. of Military and Veterans Affairs have yet to decentralize the command and control from Camp Denali on Ft. Richardson (JBER). There are only so many real military targets of significance in Alaska, those being the four major military bases and the Trans Alaska Pipeline and Terminus at Valdez. Therefore, why has the State left its military command and control in the "target zone"?

Another issue that is of concern to Alaskans is the state of our communications data infrastructure, both public and private, in face of a potential Electromagnetic Pulse attack (EMP). There was allegedly a report done in around 2007-2008, but what steps have been taken to harden the telecommunications infrastructure of Alaska's towns and cities?

In the face of the federal DHS grant largess, the Alaska State Defense Force, a proven disaster response asset was literally rendered ineffective and deemed ineligible for receipt of DHS grants by Governor Sarah Palin, then Adjutant General LTG Craig Campbell, and now Governor Sean Parnell and his Adjutant General MG Thomas Katkus. Their vision for disaster response in Alaska is based upon a reliance upon a totally federal disaster response capability and availability. This reliance is flawed based upon Alaska's disaster response experience during the War on Terror.

In 2006, with the federal commitment of the Alaska Army National Guard and the federal troops to the War on Terror, three times the ASDF was called to State Active Duty because there were no available National Guard troops to use for disaster response. Today, MG Katkus believes that Outside National Guard assets will replace any need for the Alaska State Defense Force.

Another troubling aspect of the DHS grant program has been the militarizing of local and
State police agencies. In the 1950s, the FBI began a program to standardize the organization, rank, investigative procedures, including forms and policies of the local police agencies. This program started with the training of officers and management of the local police agencies in these standards and procedures. The purpose in this was to provide a commonality in command and control for the federalization of local assets in the event of a national emergency. Now, DHS and the federal Department of Justice have taken this first step to a new level.

DOJ has provided local law enforcement with federal law enforcement grants over the years. This program was accelerated during the initial phases of the War on Terror, and somewhat overlapped by DHS.

DHS grants have provided funding to localities to use for law enforcement equipment, communications, and personnel training in concert with DOJ grants. Local and State police agencies are became eligible for priority receipt of military equipment directly from DOD.

The reason our police are looking and acting more like the military is that they are being trained in small unit operations and tactics by military instructors, equipped with similar uniforms and equipment, and instilled with an attitude that was not present in local law enforcement. That attitude is the "break it" mentality of the infantry: surrender or die. We now see NYPD officers armed with H&K MP5 submachine guns and M16A4s. Except for the color of the uniform, one would be hard put to discern the civil police tactical operations officer from any heavily armed military infantry soldier.

Unfortunately, the federal grants have failed to create the Tower of Babel that would give the federal, state and local agencies the ability to communicate with each other. The incompatibility of data base structures compounds the problem of getting information disseminated between agencies.

What are the changes for the common citizen during the course of the War on Terror arising from the attacks of 9-11?

We have seen our soldiers go to war, again, and again, and again. We have grieved with their families for their sacrifices. We have stood in awe at the commitment of duty that those sacrifices require.

We have seen our civil rights diminished and our population suborned to search and seizure in violation of their rights under the Constitution.

Is the State of Alaska more secure as a result of the DHS grants? No. Bad policy and poor leadership cannot be remedied by money. That policy and leadership, however, is not the bane of just Alaska, it is the bane of every State and most of all, reflected in our national leadership. A leadership that apologizes to the enemy, that kow tows to foreign despots and apologizes for our country!

A national leadership that excuses a religion that condones the murder of innocents, the mutilation of women, the treatment of women as property, that maintains slavery in this day and age, that kills apostates and homosexuals without due process, destroys any other religion, and seeks to impose Shari'a upon the entire world: ISLAM.

May we not forget 9-11, may it be a reminder always to future generations that ignoring a threat because of political correctness is irresponsible. People died because our government did not heed the warnings extending all the way back to the 1970s of the threat of radical Islam.

It is time we noted the lesson imparted us by the War on Terror and the experiences of our troops. We need to understand that the threat is now in amongst us. We need to understand that the War on Terror will be ongoing so long as our political leaders fail to understand the threat.

After 11 years of war, our southern borders still stand open, with swaths of our national lands off limits to citizens so that drug runners and jihadis can have free and unfettered access to America from Mexico. A nation with open borders will not remain a sovereign nation for long. That lesson of history is still being ignored so that a few can take advantage of the many seeking work, not citizenship, but just work.

This 9-11, resolve to vote the apologists out of office.

May God bless all who have served, and all who have lost loved ones in the War on Terror and in the defense of our Constitution and our Great Republic.

Up the Republic!
We apologize to NONE!




The Chinese art of war . . . and it is war.

India's recent power outage in July of this year of almost 50% of the country's generation capacity was a shocker to most in the West.  Over 640 million people in 19 states in India lost power.  The alleged cause of the power grid failure was the higher demand from the use of water pumps by rural farmers due to drought, causing the need to pump water from distant sources.  However, One India News reported that there may have been another contributing factor, aside from demand.  (

The blame surrounding the failure of India's northern power grid has been attributed to corruption, graft, greed and, most recently as related in the Washington Times citing One India News, by a purposeful strategy by the People's Republic of China (PRC) to undermine India's power grid.  Whether or not this was a demonstration by the PRC's military of their ability to disable a potential adversary's power grid through a concerted cyber attack as was alleged by India, or a red herring by India's power companies to assuage blame has yet to be determined.  (

What is known is that over the last few years, PRC companies undertook the modernization of the northern India power grid with successful bids worth several hundreds of millions of dollars.  These contracts were to install new control infrastructure, new transmission facilities and equipment, including switching centers to transfer loads from one area to another, and key components to modernize and to upgrade the power grid as part of a master plan to modernize India's power grid.

The PRC companies are alleged to have installed "back doors" into the computerized control systems for the power grid.   These "back doors" are alleged to be for the benefit of the Chinese military to exploit. The PRC companies are also alleged to have installed faulty components that broke down under load.  It has been alleged that the PRC's military undertook a concerted cyber attack against the control facilities using the alleged "back doors".

Where have we heard those allegations before?  From our very own Department of Defense. 

SecDef Leon Panetta has complained and warned of electronics parts and machined parts supplied to western defense contractors used in NATO and U.S. equipment as being defective and failure prone.  Panetta has also stated that the PRC suppliers have provided a "back door" to much of the communications and computerized systems purchased from PRC suppliers. 

It was recently disclosed that a major new weapons system, the Boeing P8 Poseidon, a replacement for the Navy's land based P3 Orion anti-submarine aircraft was compromised by defective electronic components and components having a "back door" accessible to the PRC military.  The P8 is a modified Boeing 737-800 aircraft modified for the military sub hunting mission. 

Defective and counterfit integrated circuits supplied by PRC companies have also been found in Thales military communications gear used by NATO and U.S. forces world-wide.

It is simply incredible to think that the United States is buying critical military components from a country that has a nuclear first strike policy against the United States!  Further, the United States Navy has sacked at least one Pacific Fleet Carrier battle group commander for the failure to detect a PRC Navy submarine that actually surfaced to disclose its presence to the American Navy earlier this year.  A submarine the P8 is designed to detect . . ..

PRC telecommunications companies have publically disclosed that they have hacked much of the U.S. telecom infrastructure using PRC supplied equipment installed in the U.S. as a starting point for the hacks.  The assault by the PRC on U.S. companies' mainframes and other computer infrastructure, including power grid and water system control systems has been admitted by U.S. officials.  The loss of data to the PRC is unknown.

The Pentagon has recognized the threat with the creation of the new Cyber Command.  Yet, the PRC military has ignored the assertions by our SecDef that an attack on U.S. power grid or other common control infrastructure that would have national impact would be construed as an act of war.  The cyber attacks against our military computing infrastructure is a daily occurrence.  Same for the attacks attributed to the PRC military against our commercial data infrastructure, and command and control systems for our power grids and water supplies.  Our telecommunications systems are already compromised.

Sun Tzu:  The Art of War

III.  Attack by Stratagem

"1. . . . In the practical art of war, the best thing of all is to take the enemy’s country whole

and intact;

2.  Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.

. . . 6.  Therefore the skillful leader subdues the enemy’s troops without any fighting; he captures their cities without laying siege to them; he overthrows their kingdom without lengthy operations in the field.

  7.  With his forces intact he will dispute the mastery of the Empire, and thus, without losing a man, his triumph will be complete. This is the method of attacking by stratagem.

 . . . 17. Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory:

(1) He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.

(2) He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.

(3) He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks.

(4) He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared.

(5) He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign."

If what was conveyed by the Washington Times is true, we have had a precursor of the strategy of the PRC's military in using commercial and military cyber resources to attack the infrastructure of a target state.  Our State Department and our President need to let the SecDef and the U.S. military do their jobs of protecting U.S. infrastructure unfettered by illusions of "good will" on the part of the Red Chinese where there are none on the part of the Red Chinese.

Whether we like to admit or not, another layer of strategy of the PRC in its undeclared conflict with the United States may have been revealed by the alleged cyber attacks against India's power grid in July of this year.  We can either pay attention and focus on eliminating our weaknesses in our cyber control systems, or, we can pay the price:  ". . . He will win who . .  .waits to take the enemy unprepared." 

The PRC is not playing games.

Monday, September 3, 2012

The need for voter ID

Why would the 5th Circuit's recent decision regarding the new Texas voter registration law be declared unconstitutional?  How can it be deemed discrimination and unduly burdensome so as to act to deny the "poor" minorities in Texas their right to vote? 

The reality is, these three judges, two appointed by Pres. Bill Clinton and one appointed by Pres. George W. Bush, acted to create prejudice and hardship where none existed.

The 5th Circuit was wrong in its decision, it placed conjecture above the need of the country to maintain the integrity of its voting system, and in doing so, violated their oaths to preserve and to uphold the Constitution of the United States.  The Texas ID requirements were universal, not specific to any segment of the population, thereby denying any allegation of the requirement being prejudicial, burdensome or otherwise exclusive.  Further, these federal judges seemingly overlooked the fact that this is a country of rule by majority, a republic.

How does one qualify for welfare benefits?  One applies and proves one's need and identity to qualify.

How does one get a driver's license?  In Alaska and other states, one has to present a birth certificate, or other ID, such as a rent receipt or two witnesses who have either state ID cards or driver's licenses to qualify, after passing a written and driving test.

How does one get a state identification card?  A state ID card is all that Texas was requiring to vote--it is a photo ID.  In many states, such ID is free for the asking.  One just has to apply.

How does one qualify for a political caucus of either party?  One shows ID that matches with voter registration for the district.  One can usually register to vote at the party caucus, but you must still show ID to do so.

How does one cash one's social security check, payroll check, or get cash from one's account?  Most banks and credit unions will require proof of one's identity, usually a photo ID.

How about a library card?   Your 13 year old daughter can get an abortion without your permission, but she must have parental permission to get a library card.   Libraries in most cities want proof of your identity so that they have a means to bill you for the book you forget to return.  That means a photo ID.

What is it to be poor in the United States?  The qualifications to be poor in this day and age require an income of $50,000 or less for a family of four.  Yet, one may have a TV, computer, at least one running vehicle, and rent or own the abode in which they live.

Therefore, how is that the judges of the 5th Circuit deciding the Texas case reached the conclusion that a photo identification readily available was somehow unduly burdensome and prejudicial when such is required during the course of one's everyday business?

Businesses make no provision of economic standing with regard for identification requirements imposed upon their customers.

Voter registration drives amongst the homeless, the poor, illegal aliens, and the elderly are the primary means for expanding the democratic party registrations.  Fear is the primary means used by the democrats to preserve  and to expand their voter base.  The "bad" republicans will take away your benefits!  Ignoring that that "bad" democrats had to take away other's money to provide those "benefits".

Voter fraud is a major concern in U.S. elections.  Yet, there is little in the way of an actual demonstration of widespread identity substitution taking place in elections.

There is continuing evidence of many states and localities maintaining voter registration lists with the names of dead voters, people no longer residents in the state, and even the names of pets as valid voters.  Recently, the Voter Integrity Project of North Carolina allegedly found that 30,000 dead residents were still registered to vote in NC.  Therefore, there is a need to audit voter registration lists to eliminate invalid registrations.

The main concern is not so much the idea of someone fraudulently assuming the name of another as it is allowing those not citizens of the United States to vote in national elections.  How can we as Americans maintain our sovereignty if aliens are voting in our national elections?  The influence of those not legal citizens in electing our public officials is a direct threat to our national sovereignty and the supremacy of the Constitution.

Many illegal aliens from Latin America maintain that they are not here for citizenship, but to work, making them illegal migrant workers rather than "illegal immigrants".  Yet, La Raza and other Hispanic activist groups want voting rights for Hispanic illegal aliens to impose their racist political goals upon the states and United States.  The democrats and the 'compassionate' republicans just want their votes, no matter the cost to our sovereignty or to the integrity of the vote.

Muslim activists seek to impose Shari'a law in our cities and states in violation of our Constitution.  Many Muslims are here illegally, and even those here legally, all place Islam over the Constitution.  The goal of Islam in America is to see the U.S. become an Islamic state. 

The liberal democratic party has no scruples regarding the need to maintain the integrity of the vote.  They believe that achieving their political goals and remaining in power exceed the need to preserve the integrity and legitimacy of the voting process.  Their disdain for the Constitution is well established.

It is the integrity of the vote that is important, because without that integrity, the security and sanctity of the republic is at stake.  The vote should be reserved for those who are citizens, only, and who can prove their identity, as they would have to do so during the course of their daily business.