Military news round up from around the world, 2/9/15

Quite a few things have happened since my last military news post.

Things got uglier in Ukraine, as I’m sure you heard. And here’s a heart-breaking story of their troops at the airport being outgunned, exhausted, and finally defeated.

The latest “non-Russian” aggression is really causing some raised eyebrows. President Obama is beginning to consider arming the Ukranian rebels, though German Chancellor Angela Merkel remains opposed to such a position.

NATO is increasingly taking the threat from Russia serious. They decided to boost the NATO rapid-reaction force in response to growing threats. Additionally, NATO is deploying small units to six Eastern European nations for planning purposes, in case reinforcements needed to be rapidly moved forward.

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Moving to the Middle East, things are pretty hot there, as well.

The country of Jordan is now bombing ISIS/Daesh, as well, after they burned one of its pilots alive. Additionally, Jordan executed two prisoners to avenge the pilot.

Because of the captured pilot from Jordan, the U.S. has taken additional preventive measures and moved rescue aircraft closer to Syria.

Of course, Iran is still in the picture as a potential threat. The Senate is preparing sactions against Iran if Nuke talks fail.

And I’ve got to bring up that old questions about Saudi Arabia and 9-11 are coming up again. (Me thinks — having barely read the latest news — that there’s probably more here than either the Saudi government or our government wants to discuss.)

But while it’s easy to argue things should be black and white, right or wrong on this, the truth is that the leaders of Saudi Arabia are in a complicated position. And I certainly don’t think it’s in America’s interest for the fundamentalists to topple the monarchy that largely supports us, so I’m not too in favor of airing out this dirty laundry in public…

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Finally, in other news, North Korea is heading toward another food crisis. I’m sure they’ll threaten invasion of the South again soon.

Moving to China, Sen. McCain is making waves about our carriers potentially visiting a Chinese port city.

And speaking of the Navy, not everyone there is sold on F-35 stealth technology. The plane is supposed to replace the F/A-18s, and the Marine Corps just received their first aircraft, but I continue to have concerns. And when an Admiral is speaking up about a super-controversial weapons program, there just may be more news here than any of want to think about…

To me, this plane could still go down as a huge bust for our military… From cost over-runs to delays… We’ll see. And I truly hope I’m wrong. There have been other new technologies that started out rough, but I’m pretty nervous on this one.

I’ll end the post with what was huge news at one point, but now is just barely mentioned. Ebola, which was supposed to kill us all — along with the bird flu and Y2K — is winding down in Africa. The fight against Ebola in Liberia, in which U.S. troops were sent to assist the impoverished country, is drawing to an end.

Infection rates are nearly zero now, and I must admit that even I should eat some crow over this.

I had serious concerns when President Obama deployed troops there. But now that I’ve eaten my crow, I wonder how many other Congressmen and commentators will?

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me: I’m a full-time, action-fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years writing every day in the newspaper business. Please consider subscribing for email alerts — I mostly post about things American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.


China gets more involved internationally, dipping toes into the Middle East

I’ve written at length about the growing military power in China, and our increasingly cold war we’re entering with them. (See posts here.)

I would like to see us avoid this costly cold war, as I explain in my typical Marine style in this post: America: Wake up, you bunch of stupid morons.

Not that I expect that to happen, but in the latest news on China’s military capacity and influence, look no further than this article in The New York Times from two weeks ago.

As it explains, China’s President Xi Jinping met with Mahmoud Abbas, the leader of the Palestinian Authority, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel.

I remember ten years ago when I exited the Marine Corps and entered college arguing with a friend about China. And I told him, “We will see the day when Chinese ground troops deploy to the Middle East, and they almost certainly won’t be deploying to support American efforts.”

It’s still a long ways from happening — China’s Navy is still woefully inadequate — but I’m more convinced this will happen than ever.

Here’s a key quote from the article:

“As China’s economy, national strength, and international status grow, Arab countries are looking more to China,” said Guo Xiangang, a vice president of the China Institute of International Studies in Beijing who follows China’s relations with Middle Eastern nations. “The expectations they place on China are growing.”

Here’s the link to the  article: China Dips a Toe Into Middle East Peace.

Hope you enjoy the article, and I’d love to here your thoughts. Will we see the day when Chinese troops deploy to the Middle East? And if so, in what size element? Battalion strength? Brigade? Or, even division size?

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

An archive of posts about China from the past year

This is a list of articles regarding China from my other website.

Study says that despite build up, war with China not likely

Sen. Jim Webb, a Democrat, advocates hard line against China. War, as well?

America: Wake up, you bunch of stupid morons.

Sigh. More news about our build up against China.

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.