Open Thread – 4 March 2020

Open_thread  pl

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36 Responses to Open Thread – 4 March 2020

  1. Voatboy says:

    Sir, a young man has a YouTube channel on which he claims that the US DIA recruited him to commit what appear to be crimes. He alleges that his operations were financed by drug dealing. (I might believe him if he had said he was CIA, but I cannot believe that the DIA would stoop so low.) His YouTube channel is at
    And I hope you can find evidence that he is slandering the US unjustly. I know very little about espionage but I can’t prove that he is lying. Thank you.

  2. JamesT says:

    RT is reporting that “Turkey’s parliament descended into a chaotic fistfight after an opposition lawmaker accused President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of disrespecting Turkish soldiers killed recently in Idlib”. This makes me happy on so many levels.

  3. turcopolier says:

    I have had noting to do with DIA for 26 years. I have no idea. A lot of people develop a desire to be identified with bad behavior. They like the notoriety. John Kerry was one such as in the Winter Soldier nonsense. He was not a witness to any of the behavior that he testified about.

  4. turcopolier says:

    1. Erdogan has created a situation ripe with the possibility of his own downfall. 2. Trump is going to give Jack Keane the Medal of Freedom? Well, I hope that it is in compensation for not taking his advice. 3. My wife and I are in the maximum lethality age zone for the virus. Oh, well… 4. the media and the general public seem totally incapable of comprehending that the president is NOT CinC of the United states. He/she is CinC of the armed forces, not the country. 5. Similarly the public does not want to graso the difference between former members of the armed forces and retired members of the armed forces.

  5. Nate Wilcox says:

    Any updates on the fighting in Yemen? Did the Houthis really take down a Saudi jet fighter?

  6. Nate Wilcox says:

    Also is Michael “Ayatollah Mike ” D’Andrea living or dead? Anyone heard anything since the Taliban and Iranians claimed they killed him?

  7. Serge says:

    Coronavirus spread in ME/India will cause gold prices to rise I believe

  8. To Voatboy.
    Yes, the dude look totally legit;)) I am sure he penetrated KGB and FSB with GRU not for once. I am also sure he was really good deep undercover agent in China and Kongo. I am just kidding, LOL.

  9. sbin says:

    I find it unbelievable that a man who appears to be in the early stages of dementia is the Democratic parties preferred candidate.
    I found Bush and Obama to be empty suits.Biden is on another level of incompetence.
    Truly stunning how far American government has descended.

  10. JJackson says:

    If anyone is interested I have been following COVID and have written a few posts which can be found here. They are not situation updates but explanations of processes aimed at help understand what is going on. The site they are posted on mainly tracks infectious diseases and will have updates on everything that is going on in every country.

  11. walrus says:

    Col. Lang, I am also in the target age zone. This thing has the potential to arrive as a tidal wave. There will be triage and if we are lucky us old folks will get morphine to ease us on our way. No ICU, no oxygen. just a bed and a blanket.
    There is much BS about Coronavirus on the internet. This virus is serious. Don’t believe the BS “it’s no worse than flu, heart disease kills more, yadda yadda” those ailments are a constant drip feed in the health system. The fatality rate we see today is with the best medical care; ICU, oxygen, etc. We will have to face it without that.
    BUT, we must fight and hope for despair is a sin. This could all evaporate in the summer sun.

  12. Jane says:

    Erdo’s downfall will not entail the dismemberment of the Turkish Republic UNLESS foreign powers embark on a long-desired reshaping of the political structure of the region and would involve Kurds in other nation-states. Otherwise:
    Leave aside what lurks in the hearts of the serving and retired military, the local elections that drove the AKP out of control of the major cities including strategic Istanbul [Erdi’s niney cow] and the “unspoken”understanding between the mainstream CHP and the progressive pro-Kurdish HDP that that latter would urge their loyalists to vote CHP in the cities and other areas where the CHP had a change to overturn the AKP rule and where they, te HDP, had no chance of winning. Ditto for the CHP which did not contest seats in the southeast which would naturally go to the HPD.
    It was a real blow and was coupled by the announcement that important ex-loyalists within AKP were planning to either set up an alternative wing of the party or a new party along the lines of the original values of the AKP. There is nothing to suggest that within the Turkish “political” system that aims for a more democratic and free society there is an urge for more than some form of regional decentralization and rights ACROSS the country.
    That does not mean that the un-reconstructed radicals around Ocalan would not try a grab for control of the southeast, especially if the PKK felt it was losing its attraction in favor of the Kurdish politicians, many of whom languish in jail now for years, who offer a peaceful way to participate in Turkey’s and their development. Ocalan and Erdo are two autocrats who understand each other and are more comfortable with each other than the democratic forces within their constituencies.
    Military entrapment and economic catastrophe are likely to determine what happens to today’s Sultan.

  13. Fred says:

    If this report of SF reorganization is accurate is the a good idea?

  14. turcopolier says:

    I think I tis a good idea. We have had too much micro-specialization in the era of GWOT. The Groups should be multi-capable.

  15. turcopolier says:

    We are forting up behind our walls, gates, auxiliary power and a tidal wave of antiseptics. We have been handing out bottles of Purell to all our neighbors.

  16. Fred,
    Special Forces is definitely making the right decision. The CRF companies are a waste of resources and effort. We have three battalions of Rangers who can do the door kicking and plenty of others in addition to SEALS and Delta. SF should concentrate on UW and FID and doing so in the target language.

  17. confusedponderer says:

    re: We are forting up behind our walls, gates, auxiliary power and a tidal wave of antiseptics.
    For one, good luck with the by now pandemic of COVID-19.
    I assure sceptics that corona virus is not a Democratic party joke invented to harm Trump’s re-election campaign.
    And as for the so called experts in a conservative US newspaper who asserted that corona virus was secretly built in a china bio warfare lab in Wuhan as a bioweapon and then went or sent loose – oh dear. Asked if they could provide evidence for that, they replied with “How and of course not – it was SUPER SECRET after all, you know 😉” IMO hireable loons high on dollar, speed, crack or all three.
    Here there is the annual flu time (which is ‘bad enough’, killing averagely between 8000 to 15000 people in Germany and last time gave me 41°C fever) also.
    So I wanted to get some “iron reserves” just in case, stuff like soup, noodles, zwieback, vitamin rich drink, apples and antiseptics etc pp just in case I’d get unpleasants like flu or the like.
    I tried to get that in a supermarket that I pass on my way to work every day. There was nothing left. “Preppers” or just hysterics have bought everything of that and replacement has not ben delivered yet (for a week) leaving empty shelves.
    My sister needed antiseptics and went to her pharmacy and the folks there rather idiotically laughed at her since nothing was left after people going on buying sprees there also.
    In two north germany, so it was reported, there have been cases of thieves stealing face masks and desinfection stuff from hospitals. There have also been cases of crooks selling used face masks as a protection – unsafe and for a high price.

  18. turcopolier says:

    No shortage of anything where I live. Am I supposed to apologize for being prudent?

  19. Rob Waddell says:

    In years past about this time TTG posts about the Everglades Challenge, an adventure race from Tampa to Key Largo for all types of small vessels.
    TTG’s enthusiasm for this marine adventure has led this kiwi old salt to sunny St. Peterburg where the 21′ Dovekie dory, Southern Cross, has been fitted out to undertake this (now confirmed by fellow compeditors) perilous voyage to Key Largo. It’s not a one leg trip; three shore based checkpoints along the way require navigational and sailing skill, physical strength and lots of luck with wind and tide
    We are starting the Everglades Challenge 2020 adventure race this Saturday at 0730 Mullet Cove Pinellas Park St Petersburg FL. One more day sailing practice on our Dovkie 21 then we are off! Winds are 16 to 18 kn from the NE which means a fast but hairy ride. More reports may follow if we survive. RobW from Southern Cross
    This link will take you a tracking viewer.

  20. English Outsider says:

    Best of luck if the virus comes to your area, Colonel. And to all your contributors and commenters.

  21. ex PFC Chuck says:

    A few days ago The Saker had an informative post up about the geopolitical history of the Syria/Turkey area. Probably old news for many others in the SST community, but helpful for those of us less familiar with the area.

  22. Vig says:

    “Preppers” or just hysterics have bought everything of that and replacement has not ben delivered yet (for a week) leaving empty shelves.
    Posted by: confusedponderer | 05 March 2020 at 12:36 AM
    Oh dear. And you feel you are not a prepper.
    How many people died so far around you, versus let’s say people dying from whatever accident.
    try sellery juice. Latest hype in my family. Not that the younger especially the mothers aren’t turning into temporary Preppers too. I notice.
    I never buy or byed anticeptics in a pharmacy. Here is one that might be still available. Tested on the type of virus.

  23. ex PFC Chuck says:

    John Helmer from Moscow: The USA has never presented any evidence to the Dutch leading the MH-17 crash “investigation” that a Buk missile was aunched.

  24. Jack says:

    In our small area in semi-rural Northern California the stores remain well stocked. Of course with many farms in the area there’s plenty of food. For some reason I suspected that these stories of runs on supermarkets were just media hype but it seems from your experience in Germany that it is real.
    Cheap grain alcohol is a good disinfectant. It is after all the primary ingredient in hand sanitizers. Of course nothing beats good old soap. Normal precautions of hygiene should be adequate. I’m in the high fatality age group but remain sanguine as the total reported cases are just around 100,000 worldwide. Of course with limited testing those numbers could very well be low.
    One thing is clear the level of incompetence in the US is staggering. It’s at least 60 days since the epidemic has been reported in China and even today practically no hospital and diagnostic labs in Northern California have any test kits. My grandson is a physician at one of the VA medical facilities near Sacramento. They have many patients in nursing care and they don’t have any test kits. Here we have a federal government running up the government debt by a trillion dollars annually yet there’s hardly any test kits available. Unbelievable!

  25. Fred says:

    Shortages happen every hurricane season in Florida as people can’t figure out how to have even 4-5 days of food and water for a very predictable risk. The masks being stolen from hospitals is most likely employee theft for fear or profit.

  26. hans says:

    Elon Musk keeps me hopeful… Let’s all do our damnedest to survive the present plague so we’re around to applaud his doings.
    See the latest news on his Mars ambitions at the link below.
    If I were 20 years younger I’d go clean toilets at Muskville just so I could be close to the action 🙂

  27. turcopolier says:

    I have declined to post comments from CP and others who in their idiocy insist on equating American conservatives to Nazis, Brown Shirts, etc, I will continue to do so.

  28. J says:

    The COVID19 has similar to the Blood Agents we had to deal with that the former Soviet Union had, which caused dry land drowning on its victims.
    The attack by the COVID19 rapidly hits the lower part of the respiratory systems, blood and oxygen break into the alveoli which is the gas exchange system of the respiratory system. COVID19 forces blood and blood plasma causing pulmonary edema. The victims can’t breathe and croaks.
    Dry land drowning is a horrible way to die.

  29. Patrick D says:

    For members of the committee interested, I’d like to make a plug for this National Geographic series.
    Pete is a friend and shooting buddy I don’t get to see enough. He was peacetime Army, sharpshooter and artillery spotter if I recall. Since then he’s been in the 3-D imaging industry and developed a passion for various scanning technologies.
    He is running around various WWII sites with his toys. Nat Geo is getting him access and footing the bill. He uncovers a remarkable level of detail and overlays it with records from that time to flesh out the stories of these places.
    Always happy to see a friend “living the dream”.
    Availability is scattered. This site seems a useful guide.

  30. JJackson says:

    The problem with the PCR tests occurred because the CDC developed their own test using 3 probes from the N gene and it worked well. When they sent the tests out to the regional labs and they ran it on their setups not all of them worked reliably against test samples so they had to start again. The Chinese were testing 50,000 samples a day while the CDC was the only US lab and doing a couple of hundred. It is not unusual to encounter problems of this type it is just unfortunate that it happened when time is so critical. Several national labs have developed there own probes now using different genes or combinations of genes. Chinese protocols also had problems and were reporting 30% false negatives but as the reagents and sampling procedures improve they will fall.

  31. Col. Lang, I work in a pharmacy in NYC, such things as hand sanitizers, wet wipes and isopropyl alcohol have been impossible to procure here, in some cases for the past few weeks. It has gotten particularly bad now that people have become aware of the disease being in the vicinity. I would advise of being sure that you have enough of such things for months. One of my coworkers also works for the city’s OEM and figures this coronavirus pandemic will last for “6-7 months”.
    Best of luck to both you and your wife, hopefully the efforts to contain this will be successful in the US.

  32. Serge says:

    Mass casualty attack in Kabul(at least 27 killed as of now) on ceremony marking death of a shia Hazara leader in 1995, Taliban deny responsibility. Attack bears every hallmark of the IS cells which were very active in Kabul 2016-early 2019, these cells have severely curtailed their activity since the territorial defeat of Khorasan Province in Nangarhar and Kunar a few months back. We will know soon enough from the official IS announcement

  33. Serge says:

    Update on my last post, IS releases claim with martyrdom photos of the two perps. Two foreign fighters who apparently shot at the crowd from a construction site, a tajik and one with a generic “al muhajir” kunya. Again a hallmark of these Kabul cells is their use of foreign fighters in suicide/ighimasi attacks, whoever is running this Kabul group appears to do it independently from the main Nangarhar/Kunar-based territorial IS group. And judging from the uniform quality of these martyrdom photos compared to ones from past years there appears to be unbroken operational continuity.

  34. turcopolier says:

    Your solicitude is remarkable. Thank you.

  35. J says:

    Translator Accused of Revealing U.S. Secrets Amid Tensions With Iran

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