The Boko Haram Bully Needs a Beating, But….

The Boko Haram Bully Needs a Beating, But….

—Oct. 16, 2015

President Obama Wednesday announced that the U.S. is deploying up to 300 military personnel to Cameroon for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations against the militant Boko Haram terrorist group. In making the announcement the White House emphasized that personnel would not take part in combat operations and would be armed only for self-defense.

300SpartanMenReadyToFight

So, what’s the point in sending soldiers somewhere unless they’re going to fight? Sure, “intelligence,” “surveillance” and “reconnaissance” might make a difference in helping the multi-national coalition that’s fighting the al Qaeda offshoot…. But does it not mark yet another lack of resolve in defeating the terrorists? Is it not a half-hearted effort (or perhaps 1/33-hearted)?

Not that there aren’t “political realities” that need to be considered in such engagements. For example, the deployment of too many troops could alienate the local Muslim population and lead to increased Boko Haram recruitment. Or the increased U.S. presence could lead to Boko Haram seeking even closer ties with any number of Middle Eastern Islamists. Or, and more likely, both.

True enough, but the coalition fighting Boko Haram seems to be losing ground, and the Americans are arriving on the scene like a penknife-armed cowboy rushing into a shootout. Why even bother?

Why does America of late jump into most of the world’s conflicts with limited resolve? Sure, we’ve had our moments, such as the 1983 Invasion of Grenada, 1989 Invasion of Panama, Desert Storm (until the coalition “objective” was met) the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan (until the terrorists grew hard to find), and the initial attack of Gulf War II. But that resolve proves so limited in other cases. Think of Beirut in 1983 when Reagan pulled out after the Marine barracks truck bombing. Somalia in 1993, when Clinton pulled out after the Blackhawks were downed. And the Middle East in general.

Here are a couple of answers that we know of: The Vietnam complex, in which our presidents are exceptionally wary of losing U.S. boys in foreign wars, and numerous pesky political realities. Such realities can include the lack of any U.S. political or economic interests, a lack of a well-defined and easily identifiable enemy, lack of local conflict area support, lack of friendly logistical support, fears of escalating a conflict, and fears of antagonizing either nearby friends or enemies (if not both), among others.

And granted, these political realities most definitely need to be considered. But if you’re going to fight, you generally can’t just throw one punch. Nope, when you take on the bully you keep punching until he’s down and then you tap him a few more times to make sure that he’s received the message loud and clear that “you don’t f—k with me!”

Other than Grenada and Panama, America really hasn’t done that since it took on Japan and Germany in World War II. And the rest of the world knows it.

Those American boys going to Cameroon…sure, they’ll do some good. But the bully will undoubtedly remain standing and still be cause lots of trouble. Those American boys staying in Afghanistan until 2017, as announced yesterday by Obama? Yes, they’ll do some good too, but that Taliban bully ain’t going anywhere. ISIS, al Qaeda, and any number of other Islamic groups that America is scrapping with? Same thing. In fact, all those soldiers might as well be walking around with targets on their backs, as the “insurgents,” or whatever their moniker-of-the-day is, know that if they’re patient and slowly pick off a few Americans here or there, the politicians back in the American homeland will likely lose resolve and bring the boys home.

Bottom line is if we’re going to fight, we need to actually fight–kick the living snot out of the bad guys. If the political realitiesVE-DAY-Picture force a limited resolve in this regard, then why should we even bother. But if such realities allow for the fight, but complicate a continued presence, then why not take out the bully and let those countries behind those political realities clean up the mess.

And if the politicians back home are worried about a black eye or loss of teeth (i.e, loss of American lives), well then we’d best stay home and not even contemplate a fight…let someone else deal with the bully.

So, what do you think–should U.S. soldiers even bother taking on the Boko Haram bully with such limited resolve? Hash-It-Out!

—Originally published Oct. 16, 2015 by Hash It Out!

Hashing Out the Latest Hillary Clinton News Feed

Hashing Out the Latest Hillary Clinton News Feed

—Oct. 9, 2015

Front-running Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is a dominant factor in the nation’s political news stream. And given that “news” can help make or break a candidate’s campaign, we decided to look at this month’s news feed to date in order to determine whether it was helping or hurting Hillary’s campaign.

Of course, news can be biased depending upon the source, with some news coming from the left in hopes of helping her campaign, and some from the right with an aim towards smearing the candidate. And yes, there is likely also some truly unbiased news in the mix. Thus, when considering the news and its impact on the candidate, one should also keep the source in mind and give weight to the bias that may be playing a role in how the news is being reported, and to what extent the truth of the story is accurately being portrayed.

For today’s exercise we want you to weigh each news item for level of truth, apparent slant, and, perhaps most importantly, relevance. Hash these stories out, internally and with others, to determine if each story gives you reason to vote for Hillary, or vote for another Democratic candidate. Tally up your responses to find out whether you would give your vote to Hillary if this was all you had with which to judge her candidacy.  Oh, and for those who already know they will not be voting Democrat no matter what, just try to pretend that the Democratic field represents your only option for president.

Hillary Clinton Comes Out Against Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal, The Wall Street Journal, Oct. 7– Hillary is possibly straining her relationship with the Obama administration, as her declared opposition to the Pacific trade deal undercuts President Obama’s efforts to win congressional approval for the pact.

A brave political gambit or is something else afoot?

Hillary Clinton Approaches Debate, and Bernie Sanders, With Caution, The New York Times, Oct. 6–This story details the dilemma Hillary faces in her Democratic Primary campaign against the current top rival Sen. Bernie Sanders. That is, how to successfully fight him without alienating the Democratic voters that support him.

“Damn the torpedoes” is apparently not her modus operandi….

Secret Service agents: Hillary is a nightmare to work with, New York Post, Oct. 2– This story claims that the recently released book–First Family Detail–“exposes Hillary as an epically abusive Arctic monster.” With direct quotes from the book, the story purports that Hillary is especially rude to members of her Secret Service detail and likes to use the F-word. The story claims that the book’s author writes “flatteringly and critically” about people from both political parties, but fails to highlight any examples beyond Hillary.

Guess you need to read the book….   

2010-04-01-hill12 Quirky Emails on Hillary Clinton’s Server, CBS News, Oct. 8– Quirky yes, and while not necessarily newsworthy, perhaps enlightening. In a July 11, 2011, 2:24 a.m. one-line email response to an aide’s email notifying her of the Fukushima earthquake in Japan, Secretary of State Hillary asks, “Do you have my shawl?”

They (whoever “they” are) do say email messages can be taken out of context….

Don’t be fooled by the ‘new’ Hillary Clinton, Fox News, Oct. 8–This story warns potential voters not to fall by Hillary’s efforts to present herself as “warm, fuzzy and funny, characteristics heretofore unknown in the former first lady, comer New York Senator and former secretary of state.”

Actually, the article seems to be more about the bias of NBC’s coverage of Hillary, suggesting NBC stands for “Nothing But Clinton.” 

Hillary Clinton: I’m Not Interested in VP Job, NBC News, Oct. 5–“Hypothetically speaking, no,” Hillary has no interest in being the White House second fiddle.

Guess she’s hypothetically been there-done that, what with eight years as second in command at the White House in the 1990s.  

Hillary Clinton to push new gun controls after Oregon Shooting, Chicago Tribune, Oct. 4– Hillary has apparently made strict gun laws a “centerpiece of her presidential campaign.”

A brave move, given that gun control has always served as a political hot potato….

Hillary Clinton Wants to See Lenny Kravitz’s ‘Penisgate’ video and Megyn Kelly Doesn’t Like It, Inquisitr, Oct. 6– In an interview with Lena Dunham, Hillary expressed interest in seeing the infamous video of Lenny Kravitz’s wardrobe malfunction. This in turn spurred Fox News Host Megyn Kelly to call the interview not “fitting for a presidential candidate.”

 Surprised that Hillary even knows who Lenny Kravitz is, let alone wants to see his penis….

Hillary Clinton Got Fired from a Job in Her 20s–You’ll Never Believe What it Was, People Magazine, Oct. 5– Canned from an Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 5.23.31 PMAlaskan salmon packing cannery for being too slow and complaining that the fish smelled bad.

Hillary suggests that she was fired because she raised concerns about the cleanliness of the operation; however, because she also claims the entire operation “was gone” the next day, we find this story a little fishy…. 

OK, kids, based on the news items above, would Hillary get your vote for the Democratic nomination–Hash It Out!

—Originally published Oct. 9, 2015 by Hash It Out!