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Global Leaders Rattle Their Sabers As The World Marches Toward War

The World Marches Toward War - Public DomainIran just conducted another provocative missile test, more U.S. troops are being sent to the Middle East, it was just announced that the U.S. military will be sending B-1 and B-52 bombers to South Korea in response to North Korea firing four missiles into the seas near Japan, and China is absolutely livid that a U.S. carrier group just sailed through contested waters in the South China Sea.  We have entered a season where leaders all over the globe feel a need to rattle their sabers, and many fear that this could be leading us to war.  In particular, Donald Trump is going to be under the microscope in the days ahead as other world leaders test his resolve.  Will Trump be able to show that he is tough without going over the edge and starting an actual conflict?

The Iranians made global headlines on Thursday when they conducted yet another ballistic missile test despite being warned by Trump on numerous occasions…

As tensions between the U.S. and Iran continue to mount, the semi-official news agency Tasnim is reporting that Iran’s Revolutionary Guard has successfully conducted yet another ballistic missile test, this time from a navy vessel.  Called the Hormuz 2, these latest missiles are designed to destroy moving targets at sea at ranges up to 300 km (180 miles).

Reports on the latest test quotes Amir Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the IRGC’s Aerospace Force, who confirmed that “the naval ballistic missile called Hormuz 2 successfully destroyed a target which was 250 km away.”

The missile test is the latest event in a long-running rivalry between Iran and the United States in and around the Strait of Hormuz, which guards the entrance to the Gulf. About 20% of the world’s oil passes through the waterway, which is less than 40 km wide at its narrowest point.

So how will Trump respond to this provocation?

Will he escalate the situation?  If he does nothing he will look weak, but if he goes too far he could risk open conflict.

Elsewhere in the Middle East, things are already escalating.  It is being reported that “several hundred Marines” are on the ground in Syria to support an assault on the city of Raqqa, and another 1,000 troops could be sent to Kuwait to join the fight against ISIS any day now.  The following comes from Zero Hedge

While the Trump administration waits to decide if it will send 1,000 troops to Kuwait to fight ISIS, overnight the Washington Post reported that the US has sent several hundred Marines to Syria to support an allied local force aiming to capture the Islamic State stronghold of Raqqa. Defence officials said they would establish an outpost from which they could fire artillery at IS positions some 32km (20 miles) away. US special forces are already on the ground, “advising” the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) alliance according to the BBC.

The defence officials told the Washington Post that the Marines were from the San Diego-based 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, and that they had flown to northern Syria via Djibouti and Kuwait. They are to set up an artillery battery that could fire powerful 155mm shells from M777 howitzers, the officials said. Another marine expeditionary unit carried out a similar mission at the start of the Iraqi government’s operation to recapture the city of Mosul from IS last year.

Meanwhile, China is spitting mad for several reasons.  For one, the Chinese are absolutely furious that South Korea has allowed the U.S. to deploy the THAAD missile defense system on their soil…

China is lashing out at South Korea and Washington for the deployment of a powerful missile defense system known as the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system, or THAAD, deposited at the Osan Air Base in South Korea on Monday evening.

The deployment of THAAD follows several ballistic missile tests by North Korea in recent months, including the launch of four missiles on Monday, three of which landed in the sea off the coast of Japan. Though THAAD would help South Korea protect itself from a North Korean missile attack, China is vocally protesting the deployment of the system, claiming it upsets the “strategic equilibrium” in the region because its radar will allow the United States to detect and track missiles launched from China.

Of course the U.S. needed to do something, because the North Koreans keep rattling their sabers by firing off more ballistic missiles toward Japan.

But it is one thing to deploy a missile defense system, and it is another thing entirely to fly strategic nuclear bombers into the region.

So if the Chinese were upset when THAAD was deployed, how will they feel when B-1 and B-52 bombers start showing up in South Korea?

Earlier this week, trigger-happy Kim pushed his luck once more when he fired off four ballistic missiles into the seas near Japan.

Now US military chiefs are reportedly planning to fly in B-1 and B-52 bombers – built to carry nuclear bombs – to show America has had enough.

South Korea and the US have also started their annual Foal Eagle military exercise sending a strong warning to North Korea over its actions.

A military official said 300,000 South Korean troops and 15,000 US personnel are taking part in the operation.

The Trump administration has openly stated that all options “are on the table” when it comes to North Korea, and that includes a military strike.

It has been more than 60 years since the Korean War ended, but many are concerned that we may be closer to a new Korean War than we have been at any point since that time.

And of course our relationship with China is tumbling precariously downhill as well.  Another reason why the Chinese are extremely upset with the Trump administration is because a U.S. Navy carrier battle group led by the USS Carl Vinson sailed past islands that China claims in the South China Sea just a few weeks ago.

In China, the media openly talks about the possibility of war with the United States over the South China Sea.  Most Americans are not even aware that the South China Sea is a very serious international issue, but over in China this is a major focus.

And the U.S. military has recently made several other moves in the region that have angered the Chinese

Also in February, the U.S. sent a dozen F-22 Raptor stealth fighters to Tindal AB in northern Australia, the closest Australian military airbase to China, for coalition training and exercises. It’s the first deployment of that many F-22s in the Pacific.

And if that didn’t get the attention of the Chinese government, the U.S. just tested four Trident II submarine-launched ballistic missiles during a nuclear war exercise, sending the simulated weapons 4,200 miles from the coast of California into the mid-Pacific. It’s the first time in three years the U.S. has conducted tests in the Pacific, and the first four-missile salvo since the end of the Cold War.

I can understand the need to look tough, but eventually somebody is going to go too far.

If you are familiar with my work, then you know that I believe that war is coming.  Things in the Middle East continue to escalate, and it is only a matter of time before a great war erupts between Israel and her neighbors.  Meanwhile, U.S. relations with both Russia and China continue to deteriorate, and this is something that I have been warning about for a very long time.

We should hope for peace, but we should also not be blind to the signs of war that are starting to emerge all over the planet.  Relatively few people anticipated the outbreak of World War I and World War II in advance, and I have a feeling that the same thing will be true for World War III.

ISIS Sex Slaves Reveal The True Horror Of What Is Going On Over In The Middle East

Girl Silhouette - Public DomainCould you imagine being kidnapped, being auctioned off like a piece of meat, and being endlessly gang-raped every day by some of the most evil men on the entire planet for months on end?  This is what ISIS is doing to thousands upon thousands of women in Iraq and Syria, and some of their victims are as young as nine.  The things that I am about to share with you are almost too nightmarish for words, but it is imperative that we understand what is going on.  When ISIS conquers an area that is not Muslim, they believe that they can do whatever they want to the women because they are “infidels”.  So innocent young women are being treated in some of the most horrible ways imaginable, and most of the rest of the world looks on with indifference.  But of course what ISIS is doing is just the tip of a very big global iceberg.  As you will see below, there are tens of millions of slaves in our world today, and sexual exploitation is involved in approximately 80 percent of those cases.

I came across a Daily Mail article earlier today that detailed what ISIS did to a young Yazidi woman named Khalida.  When she was captured, she was brought to one of those  infamous “auctions” where members of ISIS buy and sell women like trading cards…

A Yazidi woman sold as a sex-slave eight times by an ISIS jihadi says she was put on parade like she was being picked out in a ‘car showroom’.

Khalida, 20, was kidnapped and taken to Raqqa where she was put on display in a ‘meat market’ where women are purchased for as little as a mobile phone, or simply given away as ‘gifts’.

The most beautiful women are put into a separate ‘VIP’ room where leaders can take their time choosing their favourite three or four girls each.

Khalida and her sister were purchased initially by a very sick old man with a white beard that kept them locked away in a small room.  From time to time he would rape them, and then afterwards his wife would beat them for “tempting” her husband.

Later she was sold to other owners, and she was gang-raped by ISIS fighters multiple times.  Here is more of her story from the Daily Mail

Raped up to three times a day her ‘slave master’ or gang-raped by groups of ISIS fighters, this quiet young woman was bought and sold by eight different men – each more brutal, callous and perverted than the last.

She told MailOnline she was force-fed contraceptive pills and once taken to hospital for a contraceptive injection after she was rendered unconscious by one particularly brutal gang rape.

‘They [ISIS] did not want me get pregnant, especially if there was more than one man because they would not know who the father of the baby was,’ she said.

This is going on day after day in the Middle East, and yet it doesn’t make a lot of headlines in the western world.

Perhaps we think that if we can ignore what is happening to them that we are justified in not doing anything about it.

Next, let me share with you the story of Nadia Murad.  She was just 19 when ISIS conquered her town, and she saw ISIS kill all of the males in her family right in front of her eyes

Murad and her mother and sisters watched out of the window, along with hundreds of other women and children from the Yazidi village of Kocho, as ISIS slaughtered their men and boys. “We could see outside—they were shooting the men and they were beheading them as well. They were also taking them away in buses.

“My six brothers were killed in this way.”

In the western world, we tend to think that such things could never happen to us.  But in my new book I discuss how Christians all over the globe are eventually going to be facing this kind of persecution.

If you are under the illusion that you are somehow going to be exempt from all this, then you are going to be in for one heck of a wake up call.

After Nadia Murad watched ISIS butcher her family members, she was sold 13 different times, and her various “owners” were incredibly brutal

I first met Murad in July last year, four months after she managed to escape from her captors in Mosul. She visited the UK with two other former captives and former Iraqi MP Ameena Hasan Saeed, who helped to smuggle her out of the Islamic State. Speaking anonymously, she described in blistering detail how she was abused, raped, and sold through the ranks of ISIS troops, enduring a total of eight months in captivity and 13 owners who kept her locked up, starved and disorientated.

At the time, she showed me scars from cigarette butts burnt into her skin by the fighters who worked for her first owner, a commander called Salman. He had his men gang rape her after her first disastrous attempt at escaping. “I found a small window so I climbed out and jumped from the second story, but one of Salman’s guards found me and brought be back to him. I could have died jumping, and after that I wished I had.”

I don’t know how anyone can read these stories without having an emotional reaction.

Just imagine if this was happening to your wife or your daughter.  How would you feel?

Unfortunately, even if ISIS could somehow be wiped off the face of the planet tomorrow, that would only put a very, very tiny dent in the overall problem of sex slavery in our world.  The following are 11 facts about human trafficking that come from dosomething.org

1. Globally, the average cost of a slave is $90.

2. Trafficking primarily involves exploitation which comes in many forms, including: forcing victims into prostitution, subjecting victims to slavery or involuntary servitude and compelling victims to commit sex acts for the purpose of creating pornography.

3. According to some estimates, approximately 80% of trafficking involves sexual exploitation, and 19% involves labor exploitation.

4. There are approximately 20 to 30 million slaves in the world today.

5. According to the U.S. State Department, 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders every year, of which 80% are female and half are children.

6. The average age a teen enters the sex trade in the U.S. is 12 to 14-year-old. Many victims are runaway girls who were sexually abused as children.

7. California harbors 3 of the FBI’s 13 highest child sex trafficking areas on the nation: Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego.

8. The National Human Trafficking Hotline receives more calls from Texas than any other state in the US. 15% of those calls are from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

9. Between 14,500 and 17,500 people are trafficked into the U.S. each year.

10. Human trafficking is the third largest international crime industry (behind illegal drugs and arms trafficking). It reportedly generates a profit of $32 billion every year. Of that number, $15.5 billion is made in industrialized countries.

11. The International Labour Organization estimates that women and girls represent the largest share of forced labor victims with 11.4 million trafficked victims (55%) compared to 9.5 million (45%) men.

To me, those numbers are absolutely staggering.

Most people tend to think of slavery as something that happened in less civilized times, but the truth is that it has been estimated that there are more slaves in our world today than ever before in human history.

We live in a world that is absolutely brimming with evil.  This is something that those that believe that people are “generally good” and that humanity has a “bright future” really struggle with.

If humans are “generally good” and we really have advanced so dramatically over their centuries, then why are there more slaves in the world today than ever before and why do we see so much evil all around us?

The answer to that question reveals a lot more about someone than you might think.

If you would like to take a shot at that question, please feel free to share what you think by leaving a comment below…

*About the author: Michael Snyder is the founder and publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog. Michael’s controversial new book about Bible prophecy entitled “The Rapture Verdict” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.*

You Can Add Iraq And Ukraine To The List Of Economies That Are Collapsing

Earth Blue Planet - Public DomainThe list of nations around the globe that have collapsing economies just continues to grow.  In recent weeks I have written about the ongoing saga in Greece, the stock market crash in China, the debt crisis in Puerto Rico and the economic meltdown in South America.  But there are more economic flashpoints that I have not even addressed yet.  For example, did you know that a full-blown economic collapse is happening in Iraq right now?  And did you know that the economy of Ukraine is contracting rapidly and that it cannot pay its debts?  Back in 2008, the financial crisis was primarily centered on the United States, but this time around it is turning out to be a truly global phenomenon.

When the U.S. “liberated” Iraq, the future for that nation was supposed to be incredibly bright.  But instead, things have just gone from bad to worse.  This has especially been true since we pulled our troops out and allowed ISIS to run buck wild.  At this point unemployment in Iraq is at Great Depression levels, the economy is steadily contracting and government debt is spiraling wildly out of control

But Iraq’s oil industry, and the government’s budget, is being squeezed by low oil prices. As a result, the nation’s finances are being hit hard: the market price is now half that needed to break even, expanding the budget deficit, forecast to return to balance until the rise of IS, to a projected 9% of GDP.

In the past, Iraq’s leaders approved budgets without seriously taking into account a drop in the price of oil. Now the severe revenue shortfall is forcing leaders to cut back on new investments. Russia’s Lukoil, Royal Dutch Shell, and Italy’s ENI are also cutting back, eyeing neighbouring Iran’s pending economic opening as a safer investment.

Despite improving its finances after the US troop withdrawal, the drop in oil prices and the rising costs of battling IS have pushed Iraq’s economy into a state of near-crisis. According to the IMF, the nation’s GDP shrank by 2.7% in 2014 and unemployment is estimated to be over 25%.

Things are even worse in another nation that was recently “liberated”.  The new U.S.-friendly government in Ukraine was supposed to make things much better for average Ukrainians, but instead the economy is absolutely imploding

The country’s GDP contracted by 6.8 percent last year, and is forecast to shrink by another 9 percent this year — a total loss of roughly 16 percent over two years.

Just like in much of southern Europe, the banks are absolutely overloaded with bad loans and the entire banking system is on the verge of total collapse.  The following comes from a CNN article that was posted earlier this year…

Ukraine’s banking sector is one of the weakest parts of the economy. The key interest rates are the highest in 15 years, and experts estimate bad loans make up between one third and one half of all banking assets.

Over 40 banks have been declared bankrupt since the war began, with the country’s fourth largest lender, Delta Bank, going under earlier this week.

Just recently, the government of Ukraine declared that it could not pay its debts.  We didn’t hear much about this in the United States, because the Obama administration wants us to believe that their policies over there are a success.  But the truth is that Ukraine now needs a “debt restructuring deal” similar to what Greece has received in the past

Progress between Ukraine and its creditors on a $19 billion restructuring may be losing momentum as a proposed high-level meeting was canceled amid further disagreements over terms.

Ukraine’s $2.6 billion of 2017 notes fell the most in a month after a person familiar with negotiations said a new offer put forward by Ukraine this week would be unacceptable to bondholders. Later on Wednesday, Ukraine’s Finance Ministry said that a Franklin Templeton-led creditor group should prepare an improved offer for meetings next week.

Speaking of Greece, things just continue to unravel over there.  Earlier this week we witnessed the greatest one day stock market crash in Greek history, and there was more financial carnage on Wednesday.  The following comes from the Economic Policy Journal

For a second straight day, following the reopening of the Greek stock market, there were heavy losses in Greek banking stocks, with shares across the sector once again falling by about 30 percent, the bottom of their daily limit.

Bank of Piraeus and National Bank of Greece fell the most, falling by the daily limit of 30 percent t. Alpha Bank was 29.7 percent lower and Eurobank Ergasias lost 29.6 percent.

At this point you would have to be blind to not see what is happening.

A financial crisis is not just imminent – one is already starting to erupt all over the planet.

And none of us can say that we weren’t warned.  In a recent piece, Bill Holter included a long list of ominous financial warnings that were issued over the past two years by either the IMF or the Bank for International Settlements…

July 2014 – BIS –BIS Issues Strong Warning on “Asset Bubbles”

July 2014 – IMF –Bloomberg: IMF Warns of Potential Risks to Global Growth

October 2014 – BIS –”No One Could Foresee this Coming”

October 2014 IMF Direct Blog — What Could Make $3.8 Trillion in global bonds go up in smoke?

October 2014 IMF Report –”Heat Wave”-Rising financial risk in the U.S.

***December 2014 – BIS –BIS Issues a new warning on markets

December 2014 – BIS —BIS Warnings on the U.S. Dollar

February 2015 – IMF – Shadow Banking — Another Warning from the IMF – This Time on “Shadow Banking”

March 2015 – Former IMF Peter Doyle – Don’t expect any warning on new crisis -Former IMF Peter Doyle: Don’t Expect any Early Warning from the IMF –

*** April 2015 IMF – Liquidity Shock –IMF Tells Regulators to Brace for Liquidity Shock

May 2015 BIS – Need New “Rules of the Game” –BIS: Time to Think about New Global Rules of the Game?

June 2015 BIS Credit Risk Report –BIS: New Credit Risk Management Report

June 2015 IMF (Jose Vinals)  –IMF’s Vinals Says Central Banks May Have to be Market Makers

***BIS June 2015 (UK Telegraph) –The world is defenceless against the next financial crisis, warns BIS

July 2015 – IMF – Warns US the System is Still Vulnerable (no blog article)IMF warns U.S.: Your financial system is (still) vulnerable

July 2015 – IMF – Warns Pension Funds Could Pose Systemic Risk (no blog article) –IMF warns pension funds could pose systemic risks to the US

Overall, there are currently 24 nations that are dealing with a major financial crisis right now, and there are another 14 nations that are right on the verge of one.

But even though a global financial crisis is already unfolding right in front of our eyes, there are people that come to my website every day and leave comments telling me that everything is going to be just fine.

So what do you think?

What do you believe the rest of this year will bring?

Please feel free to share your thoughts by posting a comment below…

When It Comes To ISIS, Obama Is Utterly Clueless

Barack Obama - FacebookThe most savage group of Islamic terrorists that any of us have ever seen has taken over large portions of Iraq, Syria and Libya.  As they go along, they are gleefully beheading, crucifying and torching innocent civilians.  They believe that they are living in the end times, and that they are part of a great Islamic army that will defeat “the forces of Rome” and bring about a glorious new age during which Islam rules the entire planet.  But Barack Obama and his minions absolutely refuse to use the words “Islam” or “Muslim” when discussing ISIS.  Instead, as you will see below, the Obama administration insists that the reason that ISIS exists is because of a lack of “job opportunities” in that area of the world.  If we could just find enough good jobs for the terrorists, apparently the entire problem of Islamic terror would just fade away according to them.  This kind of twisted politically correct thinking is going to be one of the things that leads to the downfall of this country.  Tens of thousands of crazed maniacs are not setting people on fire and beheading innocent civilians because they can’t find gainful employment.  Rather, the truth is that these radicals are obsessed with an apocalyptic version of Islam which dominates every moment of their lives.  If we deny why they are doing what they are doing because it does not fit with our view of how the world is supposed to work, then we are never going to have any hope of defeating this evil.  And without a doubt, ISIS is evil.

On Monday night, State Department Spokesperson Marie Harf appeared on the Chris Matthews Show.  What she had to say about the current situation in the Middle East during that television appearance shows how completely and utterly clueless the Obama administration is when it comes to ISIS…

“We’re killing a lot of them and we’re going to keep killing more of them,” Harf said. “So are the Egyptians, so are the Jordanians. They’re in this fight with us. But we cannot win this war by killing them. We cannot kill our way out of this war. We need in the medium to longer term to go after the root causes that leads people to join these groups, whether it’s lack of opportunity for jobs… We can work with countries around the world to help improve their governance. We can help them build their economies so they can have job opportunities for these people.

Really?

That is the best that our government can come up with?

What in the world is happening to this country?

These are religiously motivated killers that are absolutely obsessed with their Islamic beliefs.  To suggest otherwise is utter insanity.  But the White House has become so politically correct that it will not even use the words “Islam” or “Muslim” when talking about ISIS…

On the eve of a White House summit on “countering violent extremism” that has already drawn complaints from some Muslim groups, the administration in its response to the beheading of 21 Egyptian Copts has not mentioned the religious affiliation of either the killers or victims.

Absent from a 192-word statement from White House press secretary Josh Earnest condemning the brutal killings were the words “Christian,” “Coptic,” “Islam” or “Muslim.”

There was a single reference to “faith” – “ISIL’s barbarity knows no bounds. It is unconstrained by faith, sect, or ethnicity.”

These terrorists truly do seem to take great joy in slaughtering people.  For example, just today we learned that ISIS burned 45 people to death in one small Iraqi town

Militants from Islamic State have burned 45 people to death in the western Iraqi town of al-Baghdadi, according to the local police chief.

Col Qasim al-Obeidi said the motive was unknown but he believed some of the victims were members of the security forces.

He has pleaded for help from the government and international community and said the compound, which houses the families of security personnel and local officials, was now under attack.

It follows the capture of al-Baghdadi, near Ain al-Asad air base, by ISIS fighters last week.

With each passing day, ISIS grows even stronger and gains more ground.

In fact, the amount of territory that ISIS controls in Syria has doubled since the beginning of the airstrikes against them.

If ISIS continues to grow, someday they will conduct operations inside the United States.  And when they do, there will be no limits.  If they had the opportunity, they would kill virtually every man, woman and child in this nation.  That is how insane they are.

In order to understand ISIS, you have to understand what motivates them.  The following is an excerpt from a recent CNS News article

In The Atlantic magazine for March 2015, reporter Grame Wood wrote an extensive article on the Islamic State and noted,  “The reality is that the Islamic State is IslamicVery Islamic. Yes, it has attracted psychopaths and adventure seekers, drawn largely from the disaffected populations of the Middle East and Europe. But the religion preached by its most ardent followers derives from coherent and even learned interpretations of Islam.”

“Virtually every major decision and law promulgated by the Islamic State adheres to what it calls, in its press and pronouncements, and on its billboards, license plates, stationery, and coins, ‘the Prophetic methodology,’ which means following the prophecy and example of Muhammad, in punctilious detail,” said Wood.

In addition, as I noted above, the followers of ISIS consider themselves to be part of an end times Islamic army that will win the final battle against the forces that oppose Islam.  ISIS is publishing a magazine named “Dabiq” that describes their apocalyptic worldview very clearly

The name of the Dabiq magazine itself helps us understand ISIS’ worldview. The Syrian town of Dabiq is where the Prophet Mohammed is supposed to have predicted that the armies of Islam and “Rome” would meet for the final battle that will precede the end of time and the triumph of true Islam.

In the recent issue of Dabiq it states: “As the world progresses towards al-Malhamah al-Kubrā, (‘the Great Battle’ to be held at Dabiq) the option to stand on the sidelines as a mere observer is being lost.” In other words, in its logic, you are either on the side of ISIS or you are on the side of the Crusaders and infidels.

So how do you defeat such an enemy?

Needless to say, giving them “good jobs” is not going to solve anything.

Meanwhile, even though large amounts of the weapons that we have airdropped to the “Syrian rebels” have repeatedly fallen into the hands of ISIS, the Obama administration plans to send the Syrian rebels even more weapons.  In addition, he wants to give the “Syrian rebels” the ability to call in U.S. airstrikes

The Obama administration is preparing to equip the so-called “moderate” Syrian rebels with the ability to order U.S. air strikes despite the group’s admitted allegiance to the Islamic State.

The rebel groups will be provided with radios to call in strikes from American B-1B bombers as well as pickup trucks with mounted machine guns as the president puts the final touches on plans to train as many as 3,000 rebels in Jordan and Turkey by the end of 2015.

The planes will reportedly use similar munitions to those seen in Afghanistan, targeting anything from small vehicles to tanks with 500 and 2,000-pound guided bombs.

Aside from the Toyota Hi-Lux trucks, multiple groups of rebels will also be given mortars and possibly antitank weapons as well.

When I first read that the Obama administration wants to give the “Syrian rebels” the ability to order U.S. air strikes, I was absolutely dumbfounded.

How could anyone be so stupid?

When it comes to dealing with ISIS, it seems like Obama is almost constantly making the wrong moves.

In the end, our nation could pay a great price for his foolishness.

So what do you think about all of this?  Please feel free to share your thoughts by posting a comment below…

ISIS Is Taking Over Iraq Using Captured American Weapons

The Caliphate On The March - ISIS Media HubISIS is marching through city after city in Iraq, and they are doing it with American weapons.  Thanks to a series of stunning victories in recent months, ISIS has captured a vast array of U.S. military equipment including trucks, Humvees, rockets, artillery pieces and Stinger missiles.  When the U.S. was pulling out of Iraq, we were extremely generous to the new Iraqi army.  We basically armed them to the teeth with equipment that U.S. taxpayers paid for.  But now that the new Iraqi army is folding like a 20 dollar suit in the face of ISIS jihadists, vast quantities of that military equipment are falling into the hands of some of the most radical jihadists the world has ever seen.  And considering the fact that ISIS also recently seized the equivalent of nearly $500 million in cash from a bank in Mosul, the leadership of ISIS won’t be having much problem buying anything else that they might need either.  ISIS is getting stronger with each passing day, and they are not going to be satisfied until the Iraqi government has been toppled.  It is a geopolitical mess of epic proportions, and there don’t seem to be any easy solutions on the horizon.

To say that the new Iraqi army has been incompetent would be a massive understatement.  Not only have they run away like scared kittens from these jihadists, they have also left behind staggering amounts of weaponry for them.  According to the Los Angeles Times, ISIS has captured “the weapons stores of the 2nd and 3rd [Iraqi army] divisions in Mosul, the 4th division in Salah al Din, the 12th division in the areas near Kirkuk, and another division in Diyala”.  And we aren’t just talking about rifles and ammunition.  We are talking about some pretty impressive hardware

Government forces retreated en masse from the onslaught, leaving behind a military hardware bonanza, including the U.S.-made armored Humvees as well as trucks, rockets, artillery pieces, rifles, ammunition, even a helicopter. Some of the seized materiel was old or otherwise non-functioning; but a lot was promptly put to use on the battlefield.

Pictures of grinning Islamist warriors cruising in U.S. Humvees bedecked with white-on-black militant flags flooded the Internet and became the signature image of the ISIS rampage.

ISIS social-media enthusiasts even mocked the global #BringBackOurGirls Twitter campaign, referring to girls kidnapped by an Al Qaeda offshoot in Nigeria. ISIS sympathizers began tweeting #BringBackOurHumvee.

One of the most popular photos mocking the Obamas and the U.S. military under the #BringBackOurHumvee hashtag is posted below…

BringBackOurHumvee

We have become a laughingstock to ISIS.  They know that we are not going to invade Iraq again.  So they are laughing at us as they use our own equipment to take over the country.

It is estimated that the military equipment that ISIS has captured so far could equip an army of 200,000 soldiers.  No wonder ISIS is recruiting more fighters so vigorously.

But wait, there’s more.

As WND has documented, members of ISIS were actually trained by U.S. personnel at a secret base in Jordan back in 2012…

Members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIS, were trained in 2012 by U.S. instructors working at a secret base in Jordan, according to informed Jordanian officials.

The officials said dozens of ISIS members were trained at the time as part of covert aid to the insurgents targeting the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Syria. The officials said the training was not meant to be used for any future campaign in Iraq.

The Jordanian officials said all ISIS members who received U.S. training to fight in Syria were first vetted for any links to extremist groups like al-Qaida.

So U.S. taxpayers have not just paid for their weapons.

We have also paid for their training.

Not only that, but ISIS has also captured the Al Muthanna chemical weapons facility.

According to WND, some officials are concerned that ISIS may be able to use that sarin gas production facility to start churning out poison gas…

And they also may be working with a man who’s known for his expertise in making sarin, a manmade toxin that was developed in Germany and can, according to the Centers for Disease Control, produce loss of consciousness, convulsions, paralysis and death in victims who are exposed.

The revelations comes as the State Department acknowledged that ISIS has captured a stockpile of old chemical weapons at the Al Muthanna chemical weapons production complex as its fighters sweep through Iraq’s Sunni- controlled region.

The access to a sarin poison gas production facility, and the man with the expertise to operate it, is the result of a new alliance between the brutal jihadist fighters and Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, who was a top military commander and vice president to the deposed Saddam Hussein.

And the folks running ISIS are crazy enough to do just about anything.  They are stone cold killers that will go to extreme lengths to advance their cause.  If you are not very familiar with ISIS yet, the YouTube documentary posted below contains some footage from some of their recent triumphs…

Iraq is literally being torn to pieces by this conflict, and even young boys are getting swept up into the fighting.

For example, check out this excerpt from a recent Daily Beast article

It was a surprising sight. The customers standing in Haj Hamdoun’s store in central Mosul watched as a masked child came into the shop, bought what he wanted without saying a word and then left again, carrying a bag containing candies and milk in one hand and a heavy machine gun, which was just about as big as him, in the other.

This was Abdullah, who appears to be the city’s youngest volunteer with the Sunni extremist group, the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, or ISIS, that took control of Mosul over two weeks ago.

Abdullah is not yet 11 years old. But his older brother and his father, who was a senior member of ISIS, were killed in fighting between the group and Iraqi security forces in 2013. That’s why Abdullah joined ISIS, although he is far from the only child in its ranks.

And the photo of a 13-year-old ISIS fighter below comes from the ISIS Media Hub on Twitter

13 Year Old Jihadist - ISIS Media Hub

So where does all of this end?

For ISIS, the conquest of Iraq and Syria would just be the beginning.  Ultimately, ISIS intends to establish a caliphate that will rule the entire Middle East (and eventually the entire world).

And who is going to stop them from taking over Iraq?  These radicals are more than willing to die for what they believe in, and the Iraqi army has been pretty pathetic so far.

The United States seems to have very little interest in another Iraq war, and other nations would probably be extremely hesitant to intervene as well.

So who is going to stop ISIS?

And is there a larger geopolitical agenda at work here?

Please feel free to share what you think by posting a comment below…

Retired Air Force Colonel With Three Graduate Degrees Is Homeless And Sleeps In A Van

Blue Van - Photo by SuperTank17What advice would you give to a retired Air Force Colonel that has three graduate degrees and that cannot even find work as a janitor?  59-year-old Robert Freniere once served as a special assistant to General Stanley McChrystal, and he has spent extensive time in both Iraq and Afghanistan.  But now this man who once had an office in the heart of the Pentagon cannot find anyone who will hire him.  In addition to his story, in this article you will also hear about several other middle-aged professionals that cannot find work in this economy either.  Despite what the Obama administration and the mainstream media are telling you, the truth is that there has been no employment recovery in this country.  What you are about to read is absolutely heartbreaking, but it represents the reality of what is really going on out there in the streets of America today.

A lot of unemployed Americans believe that they cannot find work because they don’t have enough “education” or enough “experience”.  Well, the truth is that there are a whole lot of people out there like Freniere that have lots of both and still can’t even get hired as a janitor

After a 30-year military career in which he earned three graduate degrees, rose to the rank of colonel, and served as an aide to Pentagon brass, Robert Freniere can guess what people might say when they learn he’s unemployed and lives out of his van:

Why doesn’t this guy get a job as a janitor?

Freniere answers his own question: “Well, I’ve tried that.”

Freniere, 59, says that his plea for help, to a janitor he once praised when the man was mopping the floors of his Washington office, went unfulfilled. So have dozens of job applications, he says, the ones he has filled out six hours a day, day after day, on public library computers.

So Freniere, a man who braved multiple combat zones and was hailed as “a leading light” by an admiral, is now fighting a new battle: homelessness.

You can read the rest of that article right here.  This just shows how badly the private sector in the United States is failing.  Someone with Freniere’s education and experience should be able to find work easily if our economy truly was healthy.

And of course Freniere is far from alone.  Just consider the story of 59-year-old Nancy Shields

Earlier last year, the 59-year-old Shields lost her townhouse and now rents a single room in her Southern California town. At one point, she managed a team of 60 people for a large retailer. She lost that job in 2011 but took another one—and a 20 percent pay cut—some months later. When that store closed in 2012, her luck ran out, and she has been looking for work ever since.

“My federal [unemployment] benefits (were) about $1,200 a month, and that’s all I get. … I have been very dependent on the generosity of my family members,” Shields said.

Her retirement savings exhausted, Shields said she doesn’t know what she’ll do if Congress doesn’t eventually authorize an extension.

As I have written about previously, a lot of unemployed Americans are going to lose their last lifeline now that their extended unemployment benefits are being cut off.  In fact, it is being projected that a total of 5 million unemployed Americans will lose their benefits by the end of 2014.  Many of those unemployed workers will end up losing everything.  One example of this is 53-year-old biotech researcher Vera Volk

Massachusetts resident Vera Volk also has a master’s degree, but the 53-year-old biotech researcher lost her job at the end of May and has been selling prized possessions in order to stay afloat.

“We’ve had to cash in everything that we could potentially cash in,” Volk said. “We’ve got our water heater down to the lowest we could potentially tolerate.” Volk’s extended unemployment benefits of $480 a week are the couple’s sole source of income. They’re four months behind on their mortgage, and although she and her husband have chronic health conditions, they couldn’t afford to keep paying for health insurance.

What would you do if you lost your job and couldn’t find another one no matter how hard you tried?

How would you stay afloat?

For 37-year-old Jeremy Botta, it is probably going to come down to selling off his most important possessions…

The pickup truck will probably be the first thing to go. 

It’s the first new car that Jeremy Botta has ever bought, using his savings from working for more than 14 years at the same auto repair shop. “I bent over backwards—I worked almost a 100 hours a week on my salary to turn that store around,” said Botta, 37, who was laid off in April after the shop changed owners.

Have you ever worked 100 hours a week?

There are many Americans out there that put in crazy hours month after month and end up with nothing to show for it.

Now Botta is facing the very real possibility that he will have to sell his house just to survive…

“If it comes down to it, I’ll have to sell the house,” says Botta, who bought the place in Bend, Ore., just months before he suddenly lost his job, which netted him as much as $60,000 in a good year. Having already raided his retirement savings, Botta thinks he’ll need to take three or four part-time jobs, working 60 to 70 hours a week just to get by without the unemployment checks.

“I don’t know how people make it on minimum wage,” says Botta. Having applied for nearly 100 jobs without luck—including cashier’s positions at Home Depot and Lowe’s—Botta expects he’ll be pumping gas if he’s lucky.

In a previous article entitled “15 Signs That The Quality Of Jobs In America Is Going Downhill Really Fast“, I detailed how the quality of the jobs in the United States is rapidly deteriorating.

And these days it is not just those with little education that are being forced to work low paying jobs.  In fact, the number of college graduates working minimum wage jobs has doubled since 2007.

In addition, according to a National Employment Law Project study about 60 percent of the jobs that have been “created” since the end of the last recession pay $13.83 or less an hour.

But you can’t support a family on that kind of an income.  In millions of homes in America today, both the father and the mother work multiple jobs and there still isn’t enough money at the end of the month.

The middle class is being systematically destroyed and poverty is absolutely soaring.  In some areas of the country, more than 40 percent of the people live below the poverty line.  You can check out an interactive map which shows where the highest levels of poverty in America are right here.  As you can see, the southern half of the nation has been hit particularly hard.

In a desperate attempt to stay afloat, more Americans than ever are turning to emergency loans.  I have written about the payday loan scam previously, but now a new twist on that scam has emerged.

They are being called “workplace loans”, and companies all over America are beginning to offer them as “benefits” to their workers.  But the effective annual percentage rate on these loans can be as high as 165 percent

Arizona Restaurant Systems Inc., a Scottsdale, Ariz., company that operates 28 Sonic locations in the state, allows workers to take out loans ranging from $150 to $500 that typically last two weeks.

The fees, ranging from $8 to $25 plus interest, don’t go to the restaurant franchisee, but to a lender called Think Finance Inc., which makes the loans. Based on the fees, the loans carry an effective annual percentage rate of 100% to 165%.

Please don’t get trapped in any of those loans.  They simply are not worth it.

Unfortunately, this is just the start of our economic problems.  We are in the midst of a long-term economic decline that will soon greatly accelerate.

And despite relentless propaganda from the mainstream media about how “good” things are, most Americans are very pessimistic about where things are headed.  According to a survey conducted in December by the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, 54 percent of all Americans believe that life in America will “go downhill” as we approach 2050, and only 23 percent believe that life will improve during the next few decades.

Also, Americans seem to have very little faith in the federal government at this point.  According to a shocking new poll that was just released, only one out of every 20 Americans believe that the government is functioning well and needs no changes, and 70 percent of all Americans do not have confidence that the government will “make progress on the important problems and issues facing the country in 2014.”

If you are waiting for our politicians to fix everything and save the day, you can quit holding your breath.  They are way too busy having fun and raising money for their next campaigns.

For example, despite the fact that our country is falling apart all around us, Barack Obama just took an extended holiday vacation out in Hawaii and played his 160th round of golf since taking office.

Our “leaders” are not going to rescue us from what is coming.  That is why it is imperative to get prepared for the coming storm while you still can.

Time is running out.

Blue Van - Photo by SuperTank17

Egypt Is Descending Into Civil War, But Don’t Expect Obama To Cancel His Golf Vacation

Cairo Violence - Posted by Mosaaberizing on TwitterThe largest Islamic nation in the Middle East is on the verge of descending into civil war, the Syrian civil war is starting to spill over into Lebanon, and the worst violence in five years has just hit Iraq, but Barack Obama is way too busy to be bothered with any of that.  Right now, Obama is enjoying one of the true loves of his life – golf.  According to the Washington Post, Obama has “played 18 holes of golf every day but one this week”, and without a doubt he appears to really be enjoying his time up in Martha’s Vineyard.  I hear that it is absolutely beautiful up there this time of the year.  And apparently he needs the rest.  After all, prior to this vacation he has only had time to play 133 rounds of golf since becoming president.  Between snubbing world leaders and getting the U.S. economy going again, it must be really tough for Obama to find enough time to sharpen his game.

Of course I am being facetious.  It is absolutely ridiculous how much time Obama takes off, and Congress is even worse.  Congress is taking a five week vacation right now.  Most Americans don’t get that much vacation in an entire year.

Meanwhile, as our leaders enjoy their rest, the Middle East is coming apart at the seams.

In Egypt, authorities say that 638 people are now confirmed dead and another 3,994 people were wounded in the nightmarish violence that erupted in Cairo this week.  Hundreds of bodies remain uncounted by the authorities, and it appears very likely that Egypt is rapidly heading down the path to full-blown civil war

Angry supporters of ousted president Mohammed Morsi staged protests and burned buildings Thursday as President Obama condemned the violence on both sides and canceled next month’s joint military operations.

The unrest came a day after at least 638 people were killed in violence nationwide, including 43 police officers, the Health Ministry said. Most of the deaths occurred when security forces smashed two pro-Morsi sit-in camps in the capital. In the Nasr City district, 288 people were killed.

The Health Ministry said 3,994 people were injured.

After the police moved on the camps, street battles broke out across Egypt. Government buildings and police stations were attacked, roads were blocked, and Christian churches were torched, Interior Minister Mohammed Ibrahim said.

Sadly, some of the supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood have chosen to express their fury with the government by setting Christian homes, businesses and churches on fire.  According to one report, 18 churches have been torched so far…

Now, with the crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood members by the Egyptian army, Islamist fanatics are taking out their frustrations on Coptic Christians. In the past few days, there has been a spate of attacks on Christian businesses, homes, and churches. As of Wednesday morning, according to local witnesses, at least 18 churches had been destroyed, and fires and riots were continuing to spread in Christian areas, the witnesses said.

This is absolutely despicable, and it is turning out to be one of the worst disasters for Coptic Christians ever recorded.  Over the past few days, Twitter has been absolutely flooded with reports about what has been happening to Christians in Egypt…

Using the hashtag #EgyChurch, Egyptian users of Twitter and other social networks broadcast messages like “Can’t keep up with the number of churches, Christian businesses, and affiliates being attacked by ‘peaceful’ Muslim Brotherhood,” “It’s clear the Copts are having their churches burnt,” and “This is quickly becoming the worst sectarian catastrophe we’ve seen in our lifetimes.”

Meanwhile, the violence in Iraq continues to escalate.  The following is how Reuters described what happened in Baghdad on Thursday…

Car bomb attacks killed at least 34 people in Baghdad on Thursday but the Interior Ministry said it would not allow al Qaeda, which it blames for a surge in sectarian violence, to turn Iraq into another Syria.

More than 100 people were wounded in at least eight blasts, one of which was near the “Green Zone” diplomatic complex, part of a wave of bloodshed that has taken the monthly death toll in Iraq to the highest levels in five years.

“Iraq’s streets have become a battleground for sectarian people who are motivated by hatred and religious edicts and daring to kill innocent people,” the Interior Ministry said in an unusually frank statement.

“It is our destiny to win this battle which is aimed at destroying the country and turning it into another Syria,” the ministry said.

And the absolutely brutal civil war in Syria is now spilling over into Lebanon.  On Thursday, a Shiite stronghold in Beirut was hit by the worst car bomb attack that Lebanon has witnessed in decades

A powerful car bomb tore through a bustling south Beirut neighborhood that is a stronghold of Hezbollah on Thursday, killing at least 18 and trapping dozens of others in an inferno of burning cars and buildings in the bloodiest attack yet on Lebanese civilians linked to Syria’s civil war.

The blast is the second in just over a month to hit one of the Shiite militant group’s bastions of support, and the deadliest in decades. It raises the specter of a sharply divided Lebanon being pulled further into the conflict next door, which is being fought on increasingly sectarian lines pitting Sunnis against Shiites.

And of course we shouldn’t forget about the war in Yemen either.  Sadly, as Ron Paul recently noted, most Americans don’t even realize what is going on in Yemen…

Most Americans are probably unaware that over the past two weeks the US has launched at least eight drone attacks in Yemen, in which dozens have been killed. It is the largest US escalation of attacks on Yemen in more than a decade. The US claims that everyone killed was a “suspected militant,” but Yemeni citizens have for a long time been outraged over the number of civilians killed in such strikes. The media has reported that of all those killed in these recent US strikes, only one of the dead was on the terrorist “most wanted” list.

This significant escalation of US attacks on Yemen coincides with Yemeni President Hadi’s meeting with President Obama in Washington earlier this month. Hadi was installed into power with the help of the US government after a 2011 coup against its long-time ruler, President Saleh. It is in his interest to have the US behind him, as his popularity is very low in Yemen and he faces the constant threat of another coup.

Unfortunately, this is probably only just the beginning.

The violence in the Middle East is probably going to get much worse, and at some point I expect a major regional war to erupt in the years ahead.

But instead of going back to the White House and at least giving the appearance of being on top of things, Obama plans to continue his golf vacation.

This is so negligent that even the Washington Post is ripping him to shreds…

In a sense, then, Obama might as well play golf. He’s dropped the ball on Egypt and the entire region, leaving the United States with few options and the Egyptian people to a bloody future in the short run and a repressive authoritarian junta in the longer run. This is a policy failure of the highest order.

But this is just par for the course for Obama.

As we learned this week, this is the guy that was actually playing cards during the bin Laden raid…

Despite the picture the White House released showing President Obama intently watching the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, his former “body man” says the president spent most of the raid playing a card game.

“Most people were like down in the Situation Room and [the president] was like, ‘I’m not going to be down there, I can’t watch this entire thing.’ So he, myself, Pete Souza, the White House photographer, Marvin [Nicholson], we must have played 15 games of spades,” former Obama aide Reggie Love said at an event in Los Angeles sponsored by The Artists & Athletes Alliance in July.

Love, who played college basketball and football at Duke University, left the White House in 2011 to attend business school.

You can see video of Obama’s former “body man”, Reggie Love, making these remarks right here.

When it comes to foreign policy, Obama seems to be totally clueless.

So what would happen someday if a major foreign policy crisis erupted that actually seriously threatened our national security?

Would Obama be up to the task?

Let’s hope that we don’t have to find out.

Obama Golfing

What Have We Gotten For The Trillion Dollars We Have Spent On Wars In Afghanistan, Iraq And Libya?

Over a trillion U.S. taxpayer dollars have been spent on wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.  Whether you are for the wars or against the wars, it is important for all of us to step back and evaluate what we have really gotten for all of that money.  In Libya, we have actually helped al-Qaeda forces that were shooting at U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan take over the country.  Now they have announced that they will be imposing strict Sharia law on all of Libya.  After 10 years of having our boys shot up in Afghanistan, the Afghan government is so “grateful” that they are publicly saying that they will side with Pakistan in any future war against the United States.  In Iraq, Islamic radicals are beheading and murdering dozens and dozens of Christians and the new Iraqi government seemingly can’t wait to push the remaining U.S. soldiers out of the country.  We ran up well over a trillion dollars of new debt to “liberate” these countries, but are they really in better shape than they were before these wars?  Are we really in better shape than we were before these wars?

Today, the United States military has at least one base in more than half of all the nations on the planet.

The U.S. spends more than 7 times as much on the military as any other country on earth does.

Without a doubt, the United States will always need a strong military.  But with the national debt soaring to unprecedented heights, is it really wise for us to try to be the police of the entire globe?

We have poured well over a trillion dollars into Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya and we have very little to show for it.

Are Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya safer places than before we went to war with them?

No.

Are Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya producing fewer “terrorists” than before we went to war with them?

No.

Are we safer than before we started all these wars?

No.

Our government has spent well over a trillion dollars and the blood of thousands upon thousands of U.S. soldiers has been spilled and in the final analysis very little has actually been accomplished.

Let’s take a closer look at these conflicts and see exactly what we have gotten for all of the money that we have spent….

Libya

In Libya, we have actually helped al-Qaeda take power.

In Afghanistan and Iraq we were supposedly fighting to do just the opposite.

So just what in the world is going on here?

The price tag for the first week of airstrikes on Libya alone was 600 million dollars.

Yes, Gaddafi was a tyrant, but have we invested a lot of time and effort only to watch as an even worse government takes power?

According to The Telegraph, the leader of the Libyan rebels was openly admitting that his “troops” included jihadists that were firing bullets at U.S. forces in Iraq….

Abdel-Hakim al-Hasidi, the Libyan rebel leader, has said jihadists who fought against allied troops in Iraq are on the front lines of the battle against Muammar Gaddafi’s regime.

A recent article by Kurt Nimmo for Infowars.com discussed some of the other ways that al-Qaeda has been active in Libya during the fight against Gaddafi….

Despite Aujali’s assurance, Abdel Hakim Belhadj, the former head of LIFG, was appointed to run a military council in September. He fought with al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

In February, it was reported that al-Qaeda had set-up an Islamic emirate in Derna, in eastern Libya, headed by a former prisoner at Guantanamo Bay, Abdelkarim al-Hasadi.

Now that they have won, the “rebels” have announced that they will be imposing strict Sharia law all over Libya.

According to a new article posted on The Telegraph, Mustafa Abdul-Jalil, the chairman of NATO’s National Transitional Council, has even announced plans to repeal polygamy laws because they are not compliant with Sharia law….

Mr Abdul-Jalil went further, specifically lifting immediately, by decree, one law from Col. Gaddafi’s era that he said was in conflict with Sharia – that banning polygamy.

Should we be cheering this?

Why would the U.S. government want to spend a single penny helping al-Qaeda take over Libya and set up Sharia law there?

There should not be a single American (conservative or liberal) that supports what has gone down in Libya.

Afghanistan

The U.S. military has now been in Afghanistan for 10 years.  World War II lasted less than 6 years.  The U.S. government has spent over 467 billion dollars on the war in Afghanistan, and thousands upon thousands of our troops have been killed or wounded there.

Even after all this time, a single day of the war in Afghanistan costs more money than it took to build the entire Pentagon.

So are the Afghans grateful that we have sacrificed so much to bring “democracy” to that nation?

Of course not.

Just check out what Afghan President Hamid Karzai said during one recent interview….

“God forbid, If ever there is a war between Pakistan and America, Afghanistan will side with Pakistan”

Did you catch that?

Karzai says that in a future war between Pakistan and the United States, Afghanistan is going to be fighting against us.

But didn’t we bring them freedom?

No, we did not.

Instead, one radical Islamic government replaced another.

Today, there are officially zero Christian churches left in Afghanistan.

The new constitution of Afghanistan says that that Islam is the “religion of the state“.

The new constitution of Afghanistan also states that “no law can be contrary to the beliefs and provisions of the sacred religion of Islam”.

Earlier this year, I wrote about one Afghan man that was actually sentenced to death for converting to Christianity….

In Afghanistan right now, a one-legged Afghan Red Cross worker named Said Musa is sitting in a prison cell awaiting his execution.  Musa, a father of six children, was arrested by the Afghan government as he attempted to seek asylum at the German embassy last year.  He was sentenced to death by an Afghan court that was established by the new Afghan government that the United States worked so hard to set up.  He has been tortured and sexually abused for months.  An Afghan judge has told him that he will be hung within a matter of days.  So what was his crime?  He was a Muslim that has become a Christian.  Under Sharia law, that is punishable by death.  Is this is the “freedom” that we have sacrificed so many American lives to bring to Afghanistan?

Thankfully he was later released from prison and was able to get out of the country.

However, this just shows that the people of Afghanistan are currently experiencing a level of freedom that is quite comparable to what they experienced under the Taliban.

After all that the United States has done over there, very little positive change has taken place.

Iraq

Up to now, it is estimated that the U.S. government has spent over 800 billion dollars on the war in Iraq.

Thousands upon thousands of U.S. soldiers lost arms and legs in Iraq.

Thousands of U.S. soldiers will never be coming home at all.

But after all of our efforts, Iraq is still a far less safe place than it was before we invaded.

Christians and other religious minorities once were able to worship in peace, but now they are racing to get out of Iraq as fast as they can.

Why?

Well, because Christians and other religious minorities are being brutally targeted by Islamic radicals.

For example, about a year ago more than 80 Iraqi Christians were beheaded on a single day.  All that the Christians were trying to do was attend a church service.  One four-month-old baby was actually beheaded right in front of her parents.  You can see pictures of the shocking violence from that day right here.

Iraq is a complete and total disaster zone at this point.

The Iraqi government says that it is willing for U.S. military trainers to stay in the country, but they also say that there will be no more immunity for U.S. soldiers.

We have left the country in far worse shape than we found it, and Iraq is now a bigger breeding ground for terrorists than it ever was before.

You see, the truth is that the populations of these countries will continue to hold a grudge once we leave.  They are simply not going to forgive and forget.  There are millions of Islamic radicals in these countries that will never, ever, ever forgive the United States.  The hatred that they feel for us could be passed down for generations.

We have not brought freedom to the people of Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.  Instead, we have just replaced the tyranny that they were suffering under with new forms of tyranny.

Meanwhile, we continue to spend ourselves into oblivion.

Yes, the U.S. will always need a strong military.

Yes, there are areas where we actually need to spend more on the military.  For example, now that Barack Obama has completely gutted our strategic nuclear arsenal, that is one area that we desperately need to attend to.

However, we simply cannot continue to recklessly spend money like we are today.  We are in debt up to our eyeballs, and trying to be “the police of the world” is very expensive….

*Before the start of the “War on Terror”, the U.S. national debt was under 6 trillion dollars.  Today, it is getting very close to 15 trillion dollars.

*Right now, the U.S. military is in nearly 130 different nations and it has a total of approximately 700 military bases around the world.  It takes about 100 billion dollars a year to maintain these bases.

*U.S. military spending is greater than the military spending of China, Russia, Japan, India, and the rest of NATO combined.

*The United States accounts for 46.5% of all military spending on the planet.  China is in second place with only 6.6%.

Meanwhile, our national security just continues to deteriorate.  Millions of people have illegally poured across our border with Mexico and the federal government is actually suing border states such as Arizona to keep them from trying to stop this.

Our national security priorities are way, way out of whack.  We continue to waste money in some of the most bizarre ways imaginable and yet we continue to become less secure with each passing year.

Yes, the United States needs a very, very strong military.

Yes, national security needs to be a very, very high priority.

But what we have been doing over the past decade has not worked.  In fact, the Bush/Obama foreign policy has been an abject failure.  We have poured hundreds of billions of dollars down the drain and we are less secure today than at any point since World War II.

It is time to admit that Barack Obama and George W. Bush have been fundamentally wrong about these wars.  Because of their foolishness, we are less safe today and our allies are less safe today.

Afghanistan is not our friend now.  Neither is Iraq.  Libya looks like it is going to become an al-Qaeda paradise thanks to us.

There is very little “freedom” in those 3 nations today.  Instead, “Islamic law” is being shoved down the throats of the people living in those countries.

So, in the final analysis, what have we really accomplished?

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