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  • Degrees of Toxicity

    Posted by Sgt. Mom on February 6th, 2021 (All posts by )

    The Daughter Unit clued me in this week to a humongous ruckus which brewed among Air Force contributors to military-oriented discussion boards on Reddit – a ruckus which involves the current Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force – which for the laymen audience, means the very tippy-top enlisted, that singular and exemplary senior NCO who supposedly sits at the right hand of the highest military commanders in the land, to keep them appraised of the interests of the enlisted men and women. The Daughter Unit keeps track of this military ‘gen on a more regular basis than I do, as my two-decades long service was a good while ago, and I walked away from it all and constructed another life and long-term interests in writing, book-blogging and publishing. I will confess to some sentimental feelings for my service, as it provided me with a lot of fun, foreign travel, a decent paycheck and benefits (to include the pension and retirement benefits), a chance to hang out with some amazing people (as well as a soupcon of psychos, amiable freaks and the severely mal-adjusted), and a kind of mental grounding, even a rough sympathy when it comes to people who work for a living and get their hands dirty and their fingernails broken. But enough about me, and my not-particularly-rewarding career as an enlisted minion, toiling away in the bowels of the mighty military public affairs machine some two- or three-decades past.

    The office of the Chief Master Sergeant of any service is a huge thing, in all the military forces: the name of the current Chief-Master-Whatever is one of the things military recruits to whatever branch are expected to know and recite on demand when in Basic Training. General officers there are, in legions, and the multi-stars roost en masse like grackles in the highest levels of command – but there is only one Chief Enlisted, for all four (five counting the Coast Guard) military services. This one – CMSAF JoAnne Bass – is the first female to take up that exalted office for any of the services. I wish her the best luck in the world. When I began serving, there weren’t but a bare half-dozen of female senior enlisteds in the Air Force, and a fair number of the junior enlisted that I served with were the first or second females in certain traditionally male specialties which had just been opened to females. Unfortunately, as things are shaping up in the first months of her tour of duty, Chief Bass had better buckle in, as it looks like it’s going to be a bumpy flight. She put her foot wrong, straight off the bat, when a young NCO (innocently, or perhaps not so innocently) inquired on the CMSAF’s FB page as to how her last name was pronounced – like the fish or the musical instrument?   

    I took one look at the various threads on this military-oriented Reddit on the latest Bass imbroglio and just cringed. This was my specialty – public relations, and my sense of what is appropriate in an official publication or broadcast is very finely tuned. (As one of my early mentors once observed – if you have to stop and think about saying something on air — probably best off not saying it at all.)  Did CMSAF Bass, or her public affairs team (I do assume that a) her office has such, and b) she pays them any attention) seriously consider the public affairs aspect of blasting out a shout-out on her official feed intending to support single parents with a nod to an airman ostensibly doing a good thing, but also including a repost of an article which – somewhat embarrassingly turned out to be a published article in a local base news publication. The content of that article also makes me wonder who is in charge of publishing the original story regarding the challenges of being a single military parent following upon a failed marriage to another service member. The article reposted by the CMSAF contained some rather vicious slams on the male parent, unnamed but apparently readily identified, also an Air Force member on active duty. Divorces are very often ugly, full of accusations bandied back and forth, like a particular model of social hand grenade with the pin partially pulled, especially when children are concerned. It eventually emerged that the other party to the divorce had partisans – supervisors and comrades indignant at how their troop was calumniated by extension, first by his ex, and then by the senior tippy-top-enlisted – a party who is supposed to be the champion of all enlisted, without partisan favor.

    I suppose there are several parts to this imbroglio, which in the first two parts looks to be dying down, since half-apologies and something of a public affairs rational has been given. Number the first has to do with a toxic troop, which the female of this party might yet prove to be. I have any particular knowledge of her, or her situation – but what I have read of her in the linked thread vividly recalls to my mind a couple of junior female airmen I encountered, the worst of whom was a pathological liar, and a particularly vengeful sociopath at that. This reaction just might be my bitterly cynical side kicking in.

    The second part is … well, a person in a position of leadership who demonstrates a tendency to shoot from the lip, as the old simile goes, can inadvertently do a lot of damage without meaning to, in leaping to assumptions about the motivations and abilities of people not personally known to one… Now our previous president did have a tendency towards that reaction on first glance, but one wonders now if it weren’t a more calculated volley … but never mind.

    CMSAF Bass is now two down, in reacting in a manner not to bring reassurance to the heart of many Air Force enlisted personnel, and with the military faced now with a 60-day long stand-down to examine so-called white extremism among the ranks, at the order of Biden’s Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin … that’s a serious challenge. The stand-down is supposedly to examine the force for “extremists views, ties or activities” which all sounds completely innocent and laudable … no, no it doesn’t. The whole concept reeks like week-old roadkill on a hot Texas summer day It sounds uncommonly like a witch hunt/struggle session targeting any military members accused of voting for Trump, supporting the Washington protests on January 6th, suspecting (with damn good reason) that the 2020 election was stolen by the Democrat Party, and perhaps entertaining serious doubts with regard to the utility of Critical Race Theory when it comes to military operations. The military as a whole tends towards the conservative, especially the enlisted; volunteers largely come from rural and Southern backgrounds, and from families with a strong tradition of military service. Engaging a two-month long witch-hunt and struggle session at the command of the Sec Def has the very real possibility of a number of unfortunate results, besides Lloyd Austin taking the sorry crown of most-despised by active-duty military Sec Def ever from Robert McNamara. (I went on active duty a full decade after that man’s departure – and I swear, the mid-ranked NCOs that I served with practically spat in contempt when the man’s name came up in reminiscent conversation.) The other and more serious consequence from all this is that upon knowing that recruits and serving members of a conservative bent will be regarded with official suspicion of being white racists/supremacists/bogy-men-du-jour and subject to the ministrations of whatever echelon will be serving as the US forces of the Soviet era “political officer”, several things will happen: recruiting will crater, resulting in at the very least, lowering every sort of standard for enlistment imaginable, including things like IQ, prior drug use and involvement with the penal system. First-term enlistees will decline to reenlist, cratering those figures. Career NCOs will keep their heads down and gut it out to twenty, if they are at or beyond the ten-year point. Senior career NCOs will turn in their retirement papers at first opportunity.

    So much for “Thank you for your service.” Comment as you find the heart to do so.

     

    30 Responses to “Degrees of Toxicity”

    1. Mike K Says:

      Well, she doesn’t have a “Johnson” anyway, but the next one might.

    2. Sam L. Says:

      I retired from the AF at 20 in early ’87. Glad I did that, and even more, now, from what you wrote.

    3. Anonymous Says:

      Conduct unbecoming of an NCO of her years of service. She must tick off a lot of categories wanted for public appreciation. I have no particular info on her or her career, but I did know well the politics for being moved up the command senior NCO positions. Ain’t politics beautiful.

      Within his first year Austin will eclipse McNamara in the race to the bottom. What an empty suit.

      Death6

    4. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      We have to look at this from the perspective of Beijing Biden’s sponsors in the Forbidden Palace. What the Chinese Communist Party probably wants most is a world free from the prospect of a US military intervention. Once the Japanese, Koreans, Australians, et al. know that there is no longer a US Cavalry waiting to ride over the hill to their aid, the CCP probably estimates correctly that all those countries on the other side of the Pacific will accept reality and kowtow to whatever China wants. Their question is — How do we defang the US military?

      Some bright kid in the basement of the Forbidden Palace came up with the idea of fixing the US election to put China Joe into the White House, and then getting him to appoint a SecDef with a grudge against the US military and white folks. Next step will be an order to Xiden for a drastic reduction in funding for the US military — Come on, man! We need that money for Covid masks. That bright kid is probably on track to get the Chairman Mao Comrade of Honor medal.

    5. Brian Says:

      “Once the Japanese, Koreans, Australians, et al. know that there is no longer a US Cavalry waiting to ride over the hill to their aid, the CCP probably estimates correctly that all those countries on the other side of the Pacific will accept reality and kowtow to whatever China wants”
      The ChiComs are waaaay too smart to be that stupid. The Japanese and Koreans will never bend the knee to them. The Aussies, probably, but never those other ones…

    6. Brian Says:

      Check out the twitter account of the Sergeant Major of the Army and decide if you think we are a serious country anymore:
      https://mobile.twitter.com/16thSMA

    7. Xennady Says:

      I left the USN late in the last century after one term, in part because I didn’t like the way the political winds were blowing even back then. Obviously it’s vastly worse now.

      I recall an F-14 pilot named Kara Hultgren, who crashed her plane. The navy stated that it was because an engine flamed out, no fault of hers. Then someone leaked the actual report, which noted that the engine failed because because of her actions, which killed her. Bluntly, if the navy had applied the same standards to her that it applied to men, she would have washed out- and likely would have been alive today. From my recollection, she’d failed multiple times but was kept in the program because womyn. And this was circa 1990.

      Hence, the present nonsense with the new SecDef and the USAF Chief Master Sergeant doesn’t surprise me at all, alas. Over the years I’ve occasionally had opportunity to discuss the state of the navy with discharged vets and it’s ugly at every level. Good people are leaving, not necessarily because of politics per se but because of what I’d call the politically mandated re-orientation of priorities. That is, certain people can do no wrong and others are always suspect.

      The other and more serious consequence from all this is that upon knowing that recruits and serving members of a conservative bent will be regarded with official suspicion of being white racists/supremacists/bogy-men-du-jour and subject to the ministrations of whatever echelon will be serving as the US forces of the Soviet era “political officer”, several things will happen: recruiting will crater, resulting in at the very least, lowering every sort of standard for enlistment imaginable, including things like IQ, prior drug use and involvement with the penal system.

      Well, yes. I think the recruitment issues have already appeared, and I also think there has already been an attempt to impose a Soviet-style parallel chain of command at the behest of a leftist female senator, because rape. That attempt failed. This latest attempt likely won’t, because the people in charge are just that dumb and won’t understand why it isn’t a good idea, or just don’t care.

      They’ve essentially been imposing a bias against the militarily competent in favor of the politically reliable for many years- and now we see the end result. About the only thing left for them to achieve is an obvious military defeat, which will come as a stunning surprise to them.

      Y’all ready to invade Syria?

    8. The Dark Lord Says:

      served in the Navy from 1974 to 1985 … first as an enlisted Machinist Mate then as an Officer via NAPS and the Naval Academy. Everyone I ever served with was a “Nationalist” i.e. served the Nation first from a love of country … some of us (the majority actually) happen to be white so I guess we were all “White Nationalists” long before it was a propaganda label used to smear anyone not a liberal …

      for the last 35 years I have watched liberals attempt to inflame race/gender/political-affiliation friction on all walks of life in America … they have succeeded in doing so in politics/academia/business/police and now it appears they are poised to do so in the military …

      I have also watched for years while white Americans have stepped back from holding the line on discrimination against whites … time and time again I have seen obvious anti male/white biases institutionalized in business/public affairs because I assumed that if we white males just let them push us back a little more they would stop pushing and just get on with living/working and leave us alone …

      I misjudged them … or more accurately I convinced myself that their hatred had some basis in rational behavior and would burn out if we just gave them more space … I now realize that it won’t … they hate me … they want me dead … I DON”T CARE WHY … NOT MY PROBLEM TO SOLVE … but they will have misjudged me and my kind if they think we won’t become THEIR PROBLEM TO SOLVE if they ever try to come for me or my family …

      The blood of tyrants and their families/associates/pets …

    9. Spingerah Says:

      They are going to come. They have been coming just an inch at a time. But now they are going full bore at you & your family
      My family and millions of others like you & me.
      They will stop at nothing and will never stop. Unless and until WE decide to do what has to be done.

    10. SCOTTtheBADGER Says:

      I wonder what they will call their Zampolits?

    11. Foxfier Says:

      …I am guessing, from you cringing at the response, that it is neither like the fish or the instrument, but like the female dog.

    12. OBloodyHell Says:

      }}} well, a person in a position of leadership who demonstrates a tendency to shoot from the lip, as the old simile goes, can inadvertently do a lot of damage without meaning to, in leaping to assumptions about the motivations and abilities of people not personally known to one…

      You mean, like, ‘If I Had A Son, He’d Look Like Trayvon’?
      :-P

    13. OBloodyHell Says:

      Sounds like she’s another Obama: Someone chosen solely because they matched a certain socio-ethnic “check box”, rather than for talent or ability.

      Liberals often do this. Comes from making socio-ethnic checkboxes more important than talent or ability. The latter is something they hate, and one of the parts of America that most offends them: Meritocracy.

      Yes, The USA fails at Meritocracy in many regards. But they’re historically better at it than most other nations, which is a large part of the reason for its accomplishments.

      Liberals want to kill the Golden Goose.

    14. OBloodyHell Says:

      }}} the CCP probably estimates correctly that all those countries on the other side of the Pacific will accept reality and kowtow to whatever China wants.

      I’d not be so sure of this. First off, Japan and Korea both have a strong historical enmity with China (as well a with each other) — of a kind and nature that Americans cannot think in terms of (we simply don’t HATE anyone that much, as a nation). India, similarly, is non-trivial in this regard, and they ARE a nuclear power.

      Also note that Japan has been resurgent militarily, making them less dependent on the USA for their own protection. I can easily see an alliance of Japan, Korea, and Taiwan, possibly India, with additional backing from Australia and New Zealand, perhaps also including Malaysia and Singapore, becoming the power that stands up to China. Japan is capable of it, and I can see them becoming the next major world power, acting as a counter to China.

      The world always seems to have at least two major powers… China has risen as the USSR fell, leaving the USA as the “lone” superpower. If the USA cedes their role in this regard (a distinct possibility), someone ELSE will rise to the role. Who it will be is hard to say. Japan and India, with Australia a distant third place, are the most likely answers. China may manage to act with a certain impunity for up to a decade, but that is likely to be the end of their power hegemony.

    15. george m weinberg Says:

      I didn’t see where the question was answered. I assume the answer is “rhymes with ass”.

    16. Clioman Says:

      “I can easily see an alliance of Japan, Korea, and Taiwan, possibly India, with additional backing from Australia and New Zealand, perhaps also including Malaysia and Singapore, becoming the power that stands up to China. Japan is capable of it, and I can see them becoming the next major world power, acting as a counter to China.”

      Japan may be capable of many things, but having children doesn’t seem to be one of them. Like somebody said, ‘the future belongs to those who show up for it.’

    17. Occasional Commenter Says:

      I wouldn’t count on Australia for anything. Political correctness runs very deep now, and there are no more alpha males in their society, having been bred out long ago.

    18. Kirk Says:

      In the course of my military career, I had to work with more than a few female officers and enlisted. Based on that experience, it is my observation that when you’ve got a really good and gifted female leader on your hands, you’re blessed and your unit is going to do great things. The problem is that there are so damn few of them…

      In general, I think that most women are a lot like the men in the military–You have your good, your indifferent, and your bad. The ratios are somewhat the same, but the super-toxic way that the bad female leaders operate make them exponentially more destructive than even the really bad male leaders. Then, there’s the fact that they’re operating in a blind spot for the mostly-male senior hierarchy, and they can quite literally get away with murder in some cases.

      Not that the really bad male leaders aren’t bad, or rotten human beings, it’s just that the system is used to them and knows exactly how to “route around” them. As well, they just do less damage in general for the same reasons.

      Female toxic leaders, however? Oh, holy crap… The cliques, the catty nature of their behavior, and the general politicized paranoia they bring to the table is just on another level, entirely. One really bad female leader in the right place can be divisive and destructive on a scale you can’t even comprehend, especially if you’re used to operating in a mostly-male environment.

      Male and female behaviors are vastly different, when it comes to how they go about working with each other. Men who hate each other for deep personal reasons can have decent and effective working relationships, surprisingly enough. Women? While some can do that sort of thing, there are considerable numbers that take everything personally and make political issues of literally everything, going out of their way to bitchily one-up their rivals. When you get female military leaders acting like “mean girls” back in high school? That’s precisely what I’ve seen, and what I’m talking about.

      The sad fact is that the intensity of the experience you have working with these harpies is such that you’re going to leave that position with an outright hatred of working around women, and entirely forget the good ones you’ve also had experiences with. Those tend to blend into the background, and for a lot of the guys, they tend to actually forget those women were women, not other men. Thus, much of the misogyny you can run into–The good ones get included in the “One of the guys…” numbers, and the bad ones come to represent the entire set labeled “women in the military”.

      There is also the fact that when someone toxic belongs to an easily identified sub-group, they tend to become the representative member for that set.

      There are also distinctly “male” and “female” leadership “paths”, if you will. One of the best officers I ever worked for was a woman, and she never once gave anyone the impression that she was anything other than “woman”. Some women think they need to become mannish “lads” in order to lead, which is not the case. It actually detracts–Where another guy can say something to male without causing rancor, those same words out of a woman’s mouth can be enormously emasculating and cause a total destruction of any potential for that woman to ever get that guy to do anything at all for her, either willingly or unwillingly. I watched a career senior NCO once, who torched his entire career, rather than “bend the knee” to a female commander who’d deliberately insulted him in front of his troops. And, he did that with the intent of also wrecking her career, as well… Which he did. I ran into him about five years after the fact, and it was still “worth it” to him.

      You don’t typically get the sheer volume of toxic BS with males that you do with the wrong sort of woman in a leadership role. I think it’s got a lot to do with the way the male and female minds differ, in terms of politics and working together. Bad female leaders tend to have “mean girls” mentalities that just sort of stack, and wind up being exponentially worse. The bad male leaders can do that, but it’s nowhere near as common.

      Never going to forget what our female Personal Affairs section sergeant said, upon hearing we were getting a female Headquarters company commander, which was something to the effect of “Oh, crap… Guess I gotta get used to playing “catch-me, f**k-me” again…”. She’d come over to us from a service support background where there were a lot of women, and we were a (mostly…) male Engineer brigade where the petty office politics were at a minimum. Thankfully, the new female commander we got in was a hard-castle Engineer officer who was nearly autistic in affect, and we didn’t get the political environment our PAC NCO had foreseen. Which left her slack-jawed in amazement, and all I could say was “Engineer… They’re a different breed.”. Which a lot of them are, especially the ones with actual engineering degrees and backgrounds.

    19. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      OBloodyHell: “I can easily see an alliance of Japan, Korea, and Taiwan, possibly India, with additional backing from Australia and New Zealand, perhaps also including Malaysia and Singapore, becoming the power that stands up to China.”

      You did not mention Europe as an alternative power, even though Europe has half a billion people and a GDP comparable with China’s. We all know why you did not mention Europe — and agree with that assessment! The point is that it takes more than population and productive capacity to be a superpower; it needs a sense of unity and civilizational confidence. Europe does not have it, and sadly the US is rapidly losing it. An alliance of Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Australia will never have a sufficient sense of unity to be effective.

      China seen from Japan is a little like the US seen from Canada – 10 times the population and a more dynamic economy. Once Japan knows that the US does not have its back any longer, it is highly likely that the Japanese people will decide they would rather be part of China’s Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere than risk a war they would certainly lose. Same for the other Asian countries. Hell! There are individual cities in China with populations and GDPs comparable to all of Australia.

      China’s concerns once the US has been functionally demilitarized will be with India and Russia, for different reasons. My crystal ball is too murky to guess at how those situations will be resolved.

    20. Mike K Says:

      One of the rare female generals that I know about was Susan Helms and she got torpedoed by that SOB McCaskill.

      Susan Jane Helms (born February 26, 1958) is a retired United States Air Force lieutenant general and NASA astronaut. She was the commander, 14th Air Force (Air Forces Strategic); and commander, Joint Functional Component Command for Space at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.[1] Helms was a crew member on five Space Shuttle missions and was a resident of the International Space Station (ISS) for over five months in 2001. While participating in ISS Expedition 2, she and Jim Voss conducted an 8-hour and 56 minute spacewalk, the world record for the longest spacewalk (and the longest spacewalk for a woman).[2] Helms officially retired from the United States Air Force in 2014.

      Why did she retire? While the base commander at Vandenberg, she became aware of a injustice involving a sexual assault/harassment complaint. Four officers, in two heterosexual couples, were on a date. The back seat female accused her date of assaulting her. The front seat couple saw and heard nothing like an assault and said so. The JAG officer decided to hang the guy accused and recommended not only dismissal from his commission but a bad conduct discharge, which would have severe repercussions for making a living.

      She smelled a rat and reviewed the case. She concluded that he should be allowed to resign his commission and that was all.

      General Helms was nominated for a Space Command job in 2013.

      In 2013, Helms was nominated by President Barack Obama to become vice commander of the Air Force Space Command. Senator Claire McCaskill placed a permanent hold on the nomination because Helms had dismissed a charge of a sexual assault and punished the accused on a lesser charge leading to his dismissal from the USAF, in her role as the General Court-Martial Convening Authority, who is required to review all findings.[7][8] As Helms’s lawyer explained, Helms felt the prosecution had failed to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.[9][10] Obama eventually withdrew Helms’s nomination and she retired from the Air Force in 2014.

      Not even female generals are immune from vindictive political hacks.

      Pat Schroeder was the previous incarnation of McCaskill. She was a divorce lawyer elected to Congress who decided to go after male behavior in uniform.

      Then came Tailhook, the association of carrier pilots had an annual party in Las Vegas that was marked by a lot of drinking and the sisters of members were advised to stay far away from it. It was a bit like Friday nights in the Officers’ Club after the movie “Top Gun” came out.

      Schroeder went after the senior officer present, Commander Bob Stumpf, who had done nothing wrong but his promotion was held up for years by the Clinton DoD.

      Stumpf was recommended in 1994 for promotion to captain. The Armed Services Committee endorsed his nomination and he was confirmed by the Senate.

      Before Stumpf could assume his new rank, the Navy discovered that it had failed to tell the committee of his attendance at Tailhook and of a Navy Board of Inquiry’s findings, which cleared Stumpf of wrongdoing.

      After taking months to review this evidence, the Senate committee withdrew its support for Stumpf. It did not detail its reasons, but said that because Stumpf had been confirmed, the final decision on his future was Dalton’s.

      Dalton announced that because the original error – the failure to inform the committee – was the Navy’s, he was withdrawing Stumpf’s name from the promotion list. The secretary continues to insist that he personally believes Stumpf should be promoted.

      Schroeder was blamed for this harassment for years after by Naval aviators. There was even a discipline of the San Diego O club for skits about her. The Navy has since descended into full pussification.

    21. Xennady Says:

      Once Japan knows that the US does not have its back any longer, it is highly likely that the Japanese people will decide they would rather be part of China’s Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere than risk a war they would certainly lose.

      My crystal ball suggests otherwise. I think they’ll militarize even more than they have already and deploy plentiful nuclear weapons. I further think they’ll keep quiet about the nukes until it’s too late for anyone to object. I rather doubt China will go to war against Japan knowing they’re facing vast devastation, even if they “win” in the end.

      My take is that China has the same knack for foreign relations that Wilhelmine Germany had long ago, which will eventually get them surrounded by enemies, with the difference that China’s enemies will all have nukes.

      Interesting times, especially for Asia.

    22. Brian Says:

      Xennady is 100% right. Japan will never, ever, ever bend the knee to China.

    23. Gavin Longmuir Says:

      Xennady: “I rather doubt China will go to war against Japan …”

      I rather doubt it too — but probably for a different reason. We are still stuck in the idea that war involves bombs & bullets. Look at what the Chinese Communist Party has achieved with the US — US politicians & businessfolk willingly hollowed out the US economy and moved production to China. US media comply with CCP desires, whether out of their Far Left leanings or in exchange for money. Academia is fully on board with the CCP. And now a CCP pawn sits in the White House, with the full agreement of Congress and the Courts. All of this without a shot being fired! Winning the war without fighting — it is pure Sun Tsu!

      With its falling population and spoiled single children, Japan of the 2020s is as far removed from the Japan of the post-war years as is the US. Japan’s Political Class is probably just as much for sale as is the US’s. And the CCP’s aims for Japan are probably fairly limited — essentially make sure that Japan does not become a threat to China. Why would the Japanese people die rather than accept that?

    24. Kirk Says:

      I wonder why anyone thinks Japan hasn’t weaponized all that plutonium they’ve stockpiled…?

      Around 48 tons of the stuff is on hand, per open-source data. Japan had cordial relations with South Africa and still maintains them with Israel.

      What makes anyone think they’ve not taken the steps necessary to turn some of that 48 tons into nukes already?

    25. Mike K Says:

      My take is that China has the same knack for foreign relations that Wilhelmine Germany had long ago, which will eventually get them surrounded by enemies, with the difference that China’s enemies will all have nukes.

      My impression is that the Biden administration is capable of similar clumsiness. On one hand, they may bring about a war between Israel and Iran, which would in the estimation of Tony Cordesman’s 2007 report, end the “Age of Petroleum.” This might accomplish a goal of the lunatics behind Joe Biden. Ending the use of “fossil fuels” is one of their proclamations. That this would create a world in which survival is “Nasty, Brutish and Short” seems not to be an issue for them.

      One can hope that the people who write Bidens’s stuff are clumsy enough to make such policies unlikely. I could have said “Radioactive” but that would be a pun.

    26. Xennady Says:

      And the CCP’s aims for Japan are probably fairly limited — essentially make sure that Japan does not become a threat to China. Why would the Japanese people die rather than accept that?

      I’m not so sure about the aims of the CCP vis a vis Japan and I bet the Japanese aren’t either. Plus, they have within easy reach the ability to produce more than enough nukes to make the CCP think twice about unreasonable demands, at least presuming rationality.

      Japan’s Political Class is probably just as much for sale as is the US’s.

      I doubt this, or else they wouldn’t have that 48 tons of plutonium.

      My impression is that the Biden administration is capable of similar clumsiness.

      I agree, but I also think Joe Biden has the typical level of competence of members of America’s self-described elite. That is, not much at all. Bringing about a war between Israel and Iran is roughly what I’d expect from these folks.

      General Helms was nominated for a Space Command job in 2013.

      This sort of thing is why I wrote that they have a bias against military competence. I expect that if General Helms had been willing to put the typical feminist men-are-always-wrong politics above justice she’d have sailed through the nomination process with ease- but she wasn’t, which made her unacceptable to the usual suspects. But if she had been willing to do so, I think that would have been a sign that she would have been an awful leader.

      What makes anyone think they’ve not taken the steps necessary to turn some of that 48 tons into nukes already?

      I agree. I just figure they won’t say anything until they have a reason to do so, such as if Biden’s handlers demand they bootlick the CCP, or if the CCP threatens them directly.

    27. Brian Says:

      One thing you have to credit the Japanese with is pride in the superiority of Japan. They don’t seem much interested in perpetuating the Japanese people, but they don’t acknowledge anyone as being their peers. They’re not going to bend the knee to anyone, and their politicians aren’t going to sell them out the way that ours have. We in the today’s West can’t really understand racial superiority views that still dominate nearly everywhere else–we’re taught that such views are long vanished from the world, and what does remain was caused by colonialism anyway and so is Our fault. It’s quite impressive how stupid our ruling class is.

    28. Kirk Says:

      “I agree. I just figure they won’t say anything until they have a reason to do so, such as if Biden’s handlers demand they bootlick the CCP, or if the CCP threatens them directly.”

      Here’s a thought: Why don’t we look at traditional Japanese military operations, and extrapolate from there to a situation wherein they’re dealing with a recalcitrant China?

      Does Port Arthur or Pearl Harbor ring any bells for anyone else? Japan has a history of go-for-broke coup de main strategic attacks. Does anyone think that China is any more likely to get a “warning”?

      My money is on China threatening Japan, and Japan deciding that they really, truly need to remove China from the board. This ain’t going to be pretty, and will likely be the eventual result of China supplanting the US as a world power. The Japanese and their other neighbors are willing to accept an outsider as hegemon; the US has a decent track record as an inept yet well-intentioned hegemon. China? Not so much; I expect that China turning the US into a puppet state is going to have rather severe repercussions in terms of restraining the Japanese and others.

      This is an example of unconsidered second- and third-order effects that I doubt the Chinese autocracy has really thought through. The US has gotten to where it is partially by being the genial clown blundering through the region, and the locals are more-or-less amused by the idiocy. Which may actually be an intent of ours–I don’t know. But, with the Chinese? Their neighbors know them for what they are, see the Tibetans and the Uyghurs as prototypes for their eventual fate under the Han, and… Well, let’s just say that the likely outcome ain’t going to be what the Chinese leadership thinks.

    29. Kirk Says:

      LOL… Forgot to mention: Today, 8 FEB 2021, is actually the anniversary of the Port Arthur attack. Coincidence? Probably… Amusing, nonetheless.

    30. Guardian Says:

      Getting rid of patriots and creating a new military full of thugs isn’t a bug, to them, but a feature. Why create a new force of brownshirts when you already have desert camo uniforms available and just need to replace the occupants?