The US Chain of Command


Just to make sure that everyone knows who has the power TO MAKE WAR in the US as opposed to the power TO DECLARE WAR, I will explain the present set up.

The chain of command runs from the president/commander in chief to the Secretary of Defense and from him to the combatant commanders at EUCOM, CENTCOM, Strategic Command, etc.  These combatant commands are really just headquarters designed to exercise operational control over forces raised by the service departments; Army, Navy, Air Force and provided to the combatant commands for conduct of operations.

People and institutions NOT in the chain of command;  the vice president, the CIA, State Department, Congress, the Joint Chiefs of Staff (an advisory body), the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (the head military advisor).

The War Powers Resolution of 1973 gives the president/commander in chief 60 days of unfettered authority to take military action before a justifying report to Congress is required.  If the Congress wanted to call a halt to some military action after that its most effective tools would be de-funding the operation or impeachment.  What is the chance that either of these things would happen?  I don't recall either of those things happening in the past.

With regard to nuclear war, the president/commander in chief has unlimited power to launch an attack, presumably in retaliation, 

In fact a combination of political forces that overcomes the president/commander in chief's resistance can take the US to war without congressional action. 

Do you really like this set up?  pl



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86 Responses to The US Chain of Command

  1. Imagine says:

    Very useful, thank you.

  2. Abu Sinan says:

    A recent statement from Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Major General Igor:
    “I point out to all the ‘hotheads’ that following the September 17th coalition airstrike on the Syrian Army in Deir Ezzor we took all necessary measures to exclude any similar ‘accidents’ happening to Russian forces in Syria. Any missile or airstrike on the territories controlled by the Syrian government, would pose a clear threat to Russian military personnel. Russian S-300, S-400 air defense systems deployed in Syria’s Hmeimim and Tartous have combat ranges that may surprise any unidentified airborne targets. Operators of Russian air defense systems won’t have time to identify the origin of airstrikes, and the response will be immediate. Any illusions about ‘invisible’ jets will inevitably be crushed by a disappointing reality.”
    He lays the situation out clearly.

  3. Haralambos says:

    In response to your description and question: “In fact a combination of political forces that overcomes the president/commander in chief’s resistance can take the US to war without congressional action.
    “Do you really like this set up?”
    In short, NO. Your description in your first paragraph sums up what has driven US foreign/military policy for quite some time.
    I vividly remember this piece of news, the Gulf of Tonkin incident and Resolution:

  4. Sixty days of military action is an eternity. We can get way over our heads in a lot less time than that. I’d like to see that War Powers Resolution require the President to cease military action and/or get out of the area of military action in 48 hours or less. Action beyond that should require specific approval of Congress.
    In my not so very humble opinion, I (if I was still a young man) should not have to expend my basic load in military action before those chicken shit bastards back in Washington get off their fat spreading asses and either vote to have me extracted or issued more ammo.

  5. eakens says:

    This appears to only work in a world where Congress has the power to simultaneously de-fund the adversary.
    Of course, perhaps the thinking at the time that either nobody would be foolish enough to continue fighting us if after 60 days we decided to end the war; or if they were, then the 60 days would be irrelevant since it would be a nuclear war at that point.

  6. Lefty says:

    Help please, what happened? You’ve clearly expressed the War Powers Resolution as it is currently viewed. But, it was passed to restrain unfettered executive power to make war, not enable it, and now seems turned on its head.
    The resolution requires an attack on the US or its forces (or an imminent attack) that the President must respond to without waiting for Congress. Did Congress just decide “Never mind, we really don’t want to be involved, we might get blood on our hands”?
    Obama and Hillary certainly pushed very hard on Libya that they had no obligation to do squat for Congress after 60 days or that there had been an initial attack on the US or its forces. The title of the act “War Powers Resolution” gave them infinite authority to wage war.
    From the resolution:
    “(c) Presidential executive power as Commander-in-Chief; limitation
    The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.”

  7. Jay says:

    Col. In reply to your question. No, not in the past, not now and not in the future. However I am still struggling to understand what gave the President to power to invade Syria currently?

  8. greg0 says:

    Having grown up in Iowa, I remember Senator Harold Hughes saying he would not have made a good president as he could not have ordered any nuclear strikes. Of course, this was after he had failed to get the nomination.

  9. turcopolier says:

    I don’t remember the question I asked but as to his authority I would say that under the National Security Acts of 1947 and 1958 he issued a “finding” that authorized covert action. That would then have been briefed to the Congressional Intelligence committees and that would have legally authorized present action. pl

  10. Jack says:

    This is such an important point you make. I’ve been noting that the president has limited powers on domestic policy but is truly Imperator when it comes to military interventions. The danger of the Borg Queen is so immense. First, she has a proven track record as a warmonger. Second, as a woman she’ll feel the need to be even more belligerent to prove she can be commander of our military forces. The existential threat to the US from an electoral victory by her should not be underestimated.

  11. Degringolade says:

    Gallows Humor: (Thanks Cheech and Chong)
    Cheech and Chong comedy routine in which the World War II commander of a Japanese kamikaze squadron briefly reviews the day’s battle plan for his troops.
    “Today,” he exhorts, “you will take your kamikaze airplane high into the sky, over the Yankee aircraft carrier, then take the kamikaze plane down, crashing on the deck, killing yourself and all aboard. Before we have the ceremonial sake toast, are there any questions?”
    A hand rises tentatively in the back of the crowd: “Honorable General-San: Are you out of your fucking mind?”

  12. turcopolier says:

    The interpretation of what is a threat has become anything that can be claimed to be threatening to the interests of the US and its allies. These days a president, any president can claim authority to use CIA under a “finding” or the armed forces directly under the War Powers Act. BTW, a finding often involves “lending” military personnel and equipment to CIA to accomplish the will of the “finding.” This is the case in the loan of USAF people to accomplish the CIA’s drone attacks in places not covered by the AUMF. pl

  13. Jack says:

    Couldn’t agree with you more, Sir.

  14. aleksandar says:

    I was surprised to know that Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is not in the chain of command. Was thinking that maybe he is the only chief of staff in the world that is not.

  15. Fred says:

    You forgot about the Authorization for the use of military force Hilary voted for?

  16. Babak Makkinejad says:

    This is all another storm in another tea-cup (stkan).
    Each side has made the necessary noises and beaten the proverbial chests – just like our cousins, the gorillas – and soon will be back to the business-as-usual of the Great Power Games.
    No surprises here.
    [Just look at the diplomatic history of UK in the 19-th century.]

  17. Imagine says:

    President’s volunteer call-center phone number (202) 456-1111.

  18. VietnamVet says:

    On Dec. 12, 2000 the establishment pulled George W Bush from behind the curtains. Since then the West has been an Imperium ruled out of Washington DC. Discussion of the Chain of Command is like discussing the Roman Empire AD as if it was still a Republic with a functioning Senate. The families who have the most power and money make the decisions today. The mob matters not except for bread and circuses. The Empire’s proxy armies are fighting each other. It’s industrial might outsourced. We are one airstrike on the Syrian Arab Army away from WWIII.

  19. turcopolier says:

    Thanks for the lecture. I will give you an A- on the course. In the time of Marcus Aurelius, Rome was ruled by a good and wise man. We are not and have no prospect of being so ruled. IMO it is important that the American people know how twisted to monarchical rule our government has become. That is why the chain of command is important. It is an emperor’s chain of command. pl

  20. turcopolier says:

    Before Goldwater-Nichols CJCS was in the chain of command. I suppose the reason for the removal from the chain of command was to increase political control of the military.

  21. Kooshy says:

    Colonel Lang, you are absolutely correct, no one will impeach a president in middle of a war and get blamed for losing the war. And no one will dare to deny the troops by not founding them once they are deployed. But how could limit the president’ power incase of a real emergency? For sure action can’t just wait for unending congress’ deliberations and filibuster. Action can’t either be transferred to an unelected general or a committee. IMO the answers is, to tighten the elections, and inform and educate people to care and elect better people, more trustworthy of nation’ real interests rather than the usual “people of garbage” media let us have . You are already doing this we need much more, people and sites like SST, to educated the lazy mindeds. IMO the first step is to start electing good congress persons.

  22. Ken in NH says:

    Sunday marks the 7th anniversary of President Obama receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. While I’m glad Obama has been in office rather than Hillary, he could’ve done a better job not appointing rabid neocons. He could have appointed Katrina vanden Heuvel or Steve Cohen as his National Security Advisor and they could’ve acted as his hiring manager. While I’m voting for Trump, I now have a little less confidence in my pick since his VP running mate scared the sh*t out of me with his foaming-at-the-mouth rabid Russophobia in the debate. The dude was low-key and sedate until talk of Syria and Russia came up, then he wanted to start WWIII. Not cool. I love the idea of a congenital dealmaker given the current global chessboard, but now I’m worried what would happen should anything happen to Trump. I have little doubt Hillary would work for the worst case scenario. But given what we’ve seen of her health, there is a real possibility Kaine might be the President this time next year. I think he would much better than Pence on the foreign issues. Good thing we have 6 weeks to mull all these possibilities.

  23. Anna says:

    “This is all another storm in another tea-cup.”
    Strongly disagree. Distrust breeds distrust breeds accidents.
    Also, your post implies that the US command center is filled with highly professional and competent deciders that put their integrity above their career’ aspirations. Which of the wars, during last 15 years, could give support to such belief?

  24. turcopolier says:

    In fact, IMO, the members themselves of the JCS have been systematically replaced in the post-Dempsey era with servants of the emperor rather than of the Republic. pl

  25. turcopolier says:

    ken in NH
    IMO Kaine is a holy joe who will not accept world war. Thanks be to God. pl

  26. VietnamVet says:

    Thanks for the grade. Once a professional student always one.
    The Russian reaction indicates that they believe the air strike on the SAA position prior the Islamic State attack was purposeful not a SNAFU. I wonder if the rising stakes will divert planning from his Legacy back to the ongoing world war. This strike plus the destruction of the Islamic State’s Euphrates River bridges by coalition bombers indicates that someone high in the command structure has gotten an order or a side message that keeping the Shiite Crescent cut is a priority for the establishment.

  27. ked says:

    “… as a woman…”
    hahaha very funny.

  28. robt willmann says:

    Back on 26 September I did a comment about the law that authorizes the presidential “finding” to do a “covert action”.–
    The federal statute is here–
    I also did a brief comment on 29 August about the War Powers Act, technically called the War Powers Resolution–
    The statute is here, and you can click onto each section, 1541 to 1548–

  29. Anonymous says:

    Can instruments such as the joint unconventional warfare task force execute order be used to give aditional “unfettered authority” time before the the 60 days limit sets in? It seems to me that the capabilities of the american special forces have been so expanded that the “unconventional” in unconventional warfare has become a word for something larger and more lethal than the original concept of a small subset of specialized non-conventional war activities.

  30. Tyler says:

    War with Russia in my time. Who’d have thought it?
    The mere threat of Russia blowing up a US plane over Syria in the midst of bombing SAR soldiers to support IS should make everyone take a step back from the brink, but Kim K got robbed in Paris.
    I’m busy with life, but still curious to see how this all plays out.

  31. Tol Tapen says:

    Useful? Let me see: If I understand the purpose of this exercise correctly, it is to evaluate the chances of all out nuclear war by examining the chain of command, including the president, that doesn’t really make decision to escalate and complicate the hell out of current situation. Also, I wouldn’t really consider mutiny in the USAF as a realistic way out of critical situations.
    Whoever really controls the entire political establishment, call them “borg”, “collective”, oligarchy or whatever, does not have tight, precision situational control but these people can surely escalate and complicate. Most importantly they WANT to do this. Who are they and why they want to escalate?
    There are good reasons to believe that the “borg’s collective” is just a few dozen individuals sharing the same ancient ethnic origin and the cultural mindset that comes with it. Central to this mindset is the conception of rationality. Historically, these people’s greatest successes and amazingly spectacular failures are consequential to their mindset. The USA is not the first project they run. The first one dates back to 967 AD – the same methods, the same approaches. They have learned to succeed in the most difficult circumstances. They are brazen and adventuristic. Why do they fail?
    Whatever they think is rational, English, German, French, Russian nationals may find despicable.The idea of self-sacrifice, the inspiration of fighting one’s enemy to death is alien to their mindset. Motivating ideas like “better to die standing than live on one’s knees” is beyond the borg’s comprehension. So, the chances are …

  32. LeCashier says:

    Anyone have any thoughts/ideas about how this relates to USNorthCom and Posse Comitatus?

  33. ked says:

    exceptions prove the rule(r).

  34. ISL says:

    Dear Colonel,
    Agreed. I cannot think of a single reason a wise and good man would be willing to wallow in the muck to get the job (of pres). If I could wave a wand, I would put the JCS in the chain (Again – surprising to learn they are not). IMO Bernie’s sin was not to sin.

  35. Bill Herschel says:

    A “UN envoy” has said that East Aleppo will be “destroyed” by “Christmas”. The propaganda machine is having water sprayed on it to keep it from melting.
    For what? Surely for a “military response”.
    Merry Christmas.

  36. LJ says:

    I have lost track of the consensus here on who ordered the Deir Ezzor attack that finally ended the cease fire? Obama as Commander-in-Chief in which the chain of command was intact? A Jack D. Ripper character in which the chain of command was violated? Some combination of wink wink nod nod? Was Obama undercutting Kerry with or without Kerry’s knowledge in order to force Russia’s hand?
    Frankly, since that attack took place without a strong uproar domestically as would have happened back in the Cold War days seems puzzling to say the least.
    If the answer is that Obama is too weak to stop this kind of provocation then it seems that war is very close indeed.

  37. Chris Chuba says:

    On a different but related topic, how much of a risk is there of the military is becoming institutionally insubordinate to the President?
    Two examples.
    1. Prior to the failure of the ceasefire, there was open talk that they were not willing to follow through with the agreement for the Joint Operations Agreement or to provide rebel locations.
    2. The possibility that the attack on Deir Ezzor was deliberate by some elements in our military. I am skeptical that this will be investigated properly and the President appears to be in a state of bliss and not bothered about this at all.
    Either the military is covertly implementing what he really wants and this is all a big Kabuki dance, or elements of the military are exerting their will over a weak President. I actually hope it’s the former. If it is the second, can a new President turn that around or does it linger?

  38. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I believe we only need to wait and see…
    Trust is between individual human beings – potentially – and not among states.

  39. turcopolier says:

    Rubbish. Just another JTF in the legal and appropriate chain of command. pl

  40. Ian says:

    Sixty days of military action is an eternity.
    The entire Falklands War was only ~70 days long.

  41. PeterHug says:

    It would have been quite easy for Congress to pass a law prohibiting the expenditure of money on the hostilities in Libya, and then override Obama’s inevitable veto, if they felt strongly enough about it.
    IMO the average Congressperson is quite happy to leave questions of military action to the President – they certainly behave as if this is the case.

  42. bernard says:

    I was struck by that report in
    Haven’t the Russians effectively declared a no-fly-zone over Syria? They seem to be saying outright that they wont have time to detect the origin and ownership of unidentified cruise missiles and aircraft and so they will be shot down first with questions asked later.
    Someone please tell me I’m wrong, or otherwise rush and tell the President to be very careful.
    As for Col Lang’s original question, it was Plato (Republic) who said “the guilt of war is always confined to a few persons.” Things dont seem to have changed much.

  43. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Bridges can be rebuilt.
    The fact of the matter is that men from several countries have learnt to work and fight together and die together. From such material, evidently, alliances are formed.

  44. LJ says:

    My concerns exactly. I suspect it is #1 and there is a huge game of chicken going on in the upper echelons. After all, Obama has appointed all of the hawkish policy establishment and fired all those who seek negotiation.
    I suspect that both the R2Per’s and the Ziocons have merged in the belief that Russia will back down. The that “moral clarity” must be embraced. The “brass ring” of a subservient Russia is within sight. This is no time for the faint of heart. And I suspect Obama quietly approves.

  45. jld says:

    IMO the answers is, to tighten the elections, and inform and educate people to care and elect better people, more trustworthy of nation’ real interests rather than the usual “people of garbage” media let us have .

    You still believe this to be a reasonable proposal despite what you can see all around, not only in the US and not only in our era?
    It DOES happen that some governments are run by trustworthy people caring for the real interests of the people but this is just from chance events, like “shit happens” good happens sometimes.

  46. Peter Reichard says:

    The original intent of giving Congress the power to declare war was that Congress would make the decision to go to war. The President was to be Commander in Chief to insure civilian control of the military to prevent unauthorized military adventures or coups as the President can relieve of command any General. As we no longer live in an eighteenth century world of wind powered navies and armies marching at four miles per hour the President needs authorization to respond immediately to an attack. It is however far too easy to provoke or fabricate an incident, thus the War Powers Resolution almost represents a two month standing declaration of war against whomever the President decides. This is too dangerous, so at a minimum as TTG has rightly pointed out it needs to be limited to 48 hours not 60 days as a start to rein in the Imperial Presidency.

  47. plantman says:

    I’d like know whether you agree with this breakdown of recent events in Syria(??)
    1–Kerry secures a ceasefire deal to save jihadist allies in Aleppo
    2–Ash Carter sabotages the deal by attacking Deir Ezzor
    3–Putin and Assad “go big” in Aleppo putting the pressure al nusra
    4– Obama and Kerry read Carter the riot act for effing up the ceasefire deal and condemning “their guys” in Aleppo a death sentence
    5–The UN swings into action to offer al nusra free passage out of Aleppo
    6– (This just in) al nusra refuses UN offer
    7—??? what next?

  48. Vic says:

    As an aside, the senate armed services committee earlier held hearings on Goldwater-Nichols Reform results and possible future necessary changes to the JCS. It was on C-Span and it was interesting to see the proposals by the JCS and the different Service leaders.
    As mentioned above, JCS in not in the china of command. The Committee looked at the possibility of replacing the JCS with several possible organizations that are more in line with a General Staff organization.
    I’m not sure that organizational structure is the problem area. We seem to habitually win the military conflict, but lose the peace. Also, military force is frequently employed to achieve political goals which it is incapable of achieving (install popular democratic governments). None of these issues are military problems, they belong to the civilian leadership over the military. That is what needs fixing.

  49. turcopolier says:

    IMO that is about right. 7 – Russia doubles down on troop and equipment commitment and goes all out to pacify west Syria before The Mistress takes over. A guerrilla war would continue but the Syrian government would survive. pl

  50. J says:

    The war in Syria is all about Assad rejecting the Turkey-Qatar natural gas pipeline in 2009 that would have blocked 80% of Russian natural gas export to Europe.
    Here’s an article worth reading by Robert Kennedy Jr.:

  51. Fred says:

    “the answers is, to tighten the elections,”
    What do you mean by this? Proof of citizenship to vote?

  52. Fred says:

    I believe the “official” credit would be the Syrian air defense forces. That would save face for all involved. Kim K might just be an insurance scam too.

  53. Fred says:

    There is the multi-confessional force that is the army of Syria that has remained steadfast in the face of continued onslaught of jihadists and the machinations of President Arab Spring and the borg.

  54. Pundita says:

    Colonel, you’ve made a sharp distinction that doesn’t seem clear in the public mind about the difference between conducting war and declaring war. And while such a discussion might have taken place in media outlets over the decades in relation to say, Vietnam and Iran-Contra, I can’t recall any such specific discussion. Certainly, it hasn’t been emphasized in the media.
    Yet the distinction is critically important for the public to understand because what you’re pointing to is a loophole that’s a mile wide. Yet it’s a loophole that keeps eluding the public when it argues that the president is fighting an ‘illegal’ war etc. because only the Congress has the ability to declare war.
    This argument doesn’t take into account what you’ve emphasized — that the president has the authority to MAKE war for 60 days. But this means the president can unilaterally and unofficially declare war, and present it to the Congress (and voters) as a fait accompli.
    So that loophole has to be closed. And soon, because of the very large number of actions that US ‘special forces’ are engaged in all around the world. Of course many of these are labeled something like ‘train and assist’ but as Bill Roggio pointed out in his recent article, “AFRICOM masks military operations in Somalia as ‘self defense strikes’ ” the lines are very blurred.
    It would be great to do ‘man in the street’ interviews, and ask people if they’re aware of the difference between making war and declaring it and can describe the difference. If the responders can’t do this — well, there’s the battle, right there.

  55. Anna says:

    These people are deciders and they represent the states. Moreover, the incessant conditioning of the public against bad Russians could produce catastrophic results triggered on a petty level.

  56. plantman says:

    It seems to me that Ash Carter is precisely the WRONG person to head the Pentagon at this point in time. He seems to suffer from smartest-guy-in-the-room syndrome and really wants to prove he can outwit Putin.
    It worries me about where this is all headed, after all, Putin doesn’t really have that much wiggle room. He has to reestablish the central government’s control over Aleppo before he can pack it in and get the hell outta there.
    If Carter wasn’t so obsessed with proving what a smart guy he is, he’d realize that Putin is looking for an imperfect “halfloaf” settlement that will probably piss off Assad, but allow the Russians to leave the conflict behind and get back to the business of selling oil and making money.
    IMO, Putin is not a big fan of warmaking. He’d rather swap gas for euros and sleep better at night.

  57. erichwwl says:

    Strongly disagree. There is a GREAT deal of difference between “paper” powers and acutual power, depending on the degree to which people “down the chain of command” are willing to exercise THEIR powers. A POTUS has no “nuclear button to push”. What (s)he has is an ability to transmit code, verifying that the “message” is indeed coming from POTUS. Recipients of that message must act in tandem to exercise that message, and still have the free will to do so. In the case of Russia, I am aware of two instances when such messages received were NOT enacted by the Russian recipient. Hopefully we have similar humanists in the US armed forces. In addition, for war in general, the Military is also required to carry out “Presidential (corporate handler)” druthers. In the current state of affairs, the fact the the POTUS and military are not on the same page is evident to anyone following how US military power works, particulkarly in the case of Syria.
    Power can be thought of as “rights”. Some (this author, apparently) conceive of rights as those specified by contract or law. The way property rights were (are?) presented in the UCLA-Univ. of Chicago paradigm, which make MUCH more sense to me, was (is) that rights have more utility when thought of as ACTUAL. Thus “rights are the “expectations a person has that his decision about the uses of certasin resources will be effective.” see eg
    It has been my experience that models predicting behavior on the basis of REAL rights will lead to better predictions that those based on “paper or legal rights” alone.

  58. Anna says:

    Curiosier and curiosier:
    “Turi was indicted in 2014 on four felony counts: two of arms dealing in violation of the Arms Export Control Act and two of lying to the State Department in official applications… In an interview last year, Turi said the U.S. was aware that weapons being shipped into Libya during the unrest there were being immediately diverted to Syria. Turi also said he came up with an idea he termed “zero footprint,” where the U.S. would send weapons to Libyan rebels through Arab countries, like Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.”
    “Mr. Turi cooperated with the Department’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls in its review and proposed administrative settlement of the alleged violations,” said the official, who asked not be named.”
    Ah, these ‘Libyan rebels:”

  59. kooshy says:

    “You still believe this to be a reasonable proposal”
    Not really, but I can’t think of any better alternative for a civilized polity. IMO adding more laws and more complications will not change a thing, like the 70s WPA made changed nothing. IMO Educating people in the route like this site does is doing is slow but more effective. I can’t count how many wars, without authorization from congress US got into since the WPA of 1973.

  60. turcopolier says:

    You sound like some sort of professor. Law maybe? I don’t know of you have been in the military, but soldiers live by what you choose to think is theoretical authority. pl

  61. LeaNder says:

    I have lost track of the consensus here on who ordered the Deir Ezzor attack
    As far as I concerned, you didn’t loose track of consensus, but yes there may have been one dominating hypothesis.

  62. Imagine says:


  63. Castellio says:

    I believe this is one of the most central issues. Hiring policies (lets call them that) have aligned the “world view” of State, Justice and Treasury with the Neocon cabal. The one large institutional and ever-present counterweight was the Pentagon. However, we may have reached a turning point. In which case, where is the large ever-present institutional counterweight to neocon ambitions?

  64. Imagine says:

    U.S. mentions it’s test-bombing dummy nukes in Nevada…just by the way…

  65. Ex-PFC Chuck says:

    Then there was The Six Day War of 1967.

  66. Ex-PFC Chuck says:

    Re: “Kim K might just be an insurance scam too”
    Or a PR scam.

  67. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Heard from a Trump supporter a few days ago – a humble baker – that he expects a President Trump to be not a coward like Obama; to show it to that guy in Russia (whose name he did not know).
    It is like Rosalyn Carter said last year: “American people prefer war to peace”.

  68. Lemur says:

    I really think the constellation of deep state interests in Washington want to go to war. All the major op eds are beating the drum. The atmosphere is precisely the same as before the Iraq War(s). The media blitz shows they’re manufacturing consent.
    Steve Cohen says in his estimation the decision has been made in the Kremlin to break the spine of the headchoppers once and for all no matter what the diplomatic, military, or economic cost.
    RT wraps it up here:

  69. kooshy says:

    Fred although I fully agree with that, you must proof you are citizen (t least once) to be eligible to vote, that’s not what I meant by tightening the elections. I meant to make the campaigns more equal and more responsible for the information they put out, same with the media bring back the rebuttle right, limit and make equal the number and time for ad for each campaign, limit the 2 major parties so smaller parties can come up to have more chance then 2% that’ make the race more even and more chance for people to choose, limit the domestic or foreign special interests with very strict laws.
    When I first registered to vote some 40 years ago, it was outside of a supper market without being asked for even an ID, somehow I think it makes you feel more responsible and more important to a national election when you have proof you are eligible and part of the nation, like applying for a passport. There are lots of ways to clean and take the poison out of the current lose system. I know all this is really hard to do getting it pass the congress, pass the supreme court since you will have multiple court cases. But outside of a new evolution I can’t see another way to elect the 537 fed elected offices.

  70. ex-PFC Chuck says:

    re: “In the case of Russia, I am aware of two instances when such messages received were NOT enacted by the Russian recipient. Hopefully we have similar humanists in the US armed forces.”
    A former USAF enlisted man has come forward with a tale that asserts we did have such a humanist, a USAF captain, at an Okinawa cruise missile base during the peak of the Cuban Missile Crisis:

  71. Thomas says:

    “Who are they and why they want to escalate?”
    The Usual Subversives with the delirious dream of being GoD(Globalists of Domination).
    They are escalating to try and create a totalitarian police state here to bunker down in or destroy it all because irredeemable inferiors would not submit to their superior imperium. Also if the dream dies and reality hits the fan, they know they will be tried and punished for their criminal acts.

  72. Kooshy says:

    I wrote here on this site, a few days back, that IMO president Obama deserve another nobel peace prize, this time for leaving the office of president, of course pending he don’t start WW3 before he leaves. Though not too optimistic with recent exchanges.

  73. FourthAndLong says:

    Perhaps OT: US Intel officially accuses RF of election hacking. According to WAPO & RT Oct. 7

  74. Anna says:
    Ah, there is such a touching humanitarian concern in the voice of the interviewer:
    “At the moment, there’s a seven-year-old girl, her name is Bana al-Abed, from Aleppo. She’s Tweeting about her life in the eastern part of Aleppo. She’s talking about the massive bombardment. She’s very scared, every time she wakes up and realizes, fortunately, she’s still alive. Do you trust her as an eyewitness?”
    President Assad:
    “You cannot build your political position or stand, let’s say, according to a video promoted by the terrorists or their supporters. It’s a game now, a game of propaganda, it’s a game of media. You can see anything, and you can be sympathetic with every picture and every video you see. But our mission as a government is to deal with the reality. You have terrorists in Syria, they are supported by foreign powers and foreign countries, and we have to defend our country. In some areas, the terrorists use the civilians as a human shield, but we have to do our job to liberate them, we cannot say “we won’t do anything because the terrorists are holding those hostages.” It’s our mission.”
    “Do you know the unicorn, the animal that’s like a horse, has a long horn? It’s a myth. And the moderate opposition is a myth. That’s why you cannot separate something that doesn’t exist from something that exists. All of them have the same grassroots, the same grassroots that used to be called “free Syrian army” four years ago, five years ago, then it became al-Nusra, then it became ISIS. So, the same grassroots move from group to another group. That’s why they cannot separate it. And they don’t want..”

  75. Anna says:

    “I am surprised Putin did not demand to return Alaska.”

  76. erichwwl says:

    Thank you. I would love if that story were true. The Bulletin article you offer seems seems to doubt it.For others interested, the story is here:

  77. Imagine says:

    Finally a clear article that Senators can read. But he buries his point: When America achieves energy independence, then we’ll be able to stop wars for the sake of the Middle East. Strategically critical.

  78. erichwwl says:

    hmmm. Wonder were the commander in chief fits in this theoretical authority?
    ” One proposed way to get around the White House’s long-standing objection to striking the Assad regime without a U.N. Security Council resolution would be to carry out the strikes covertly and without public acknowledgment, the official said.”

  79. Walker says:

    that attack took place without a strong uproar domestically . . . seems puzzling to say the least.
    The antiwar movement is weaker than it was. Part of the reason for that is that the media have turned entirely towards war.
    I wrote my senators and Congresswoman at the time via the handy tiny boxes on their web sites. No reply yet.

  80. J says:

    Don’t forget the Israeli angle, that we the U.S. are their b*eatch and our White House, Congress, State and the CIA bowing and scraping and doing their Israeli bidding at their Israeli beckon hegemonic call, like a bunch of Harlequin court jesters with their face-paint and floppy printed caps before their master.
    I’m tired of seeing U.S. kids dying for some other nation’s idiocy, all because of a bunch of spineless U.S. politicians who IMO belong in U.S. prison cells for their betrayal of trust.

  81. joe says:

    gosh it is hard to read that typeface…

  82. Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg says:

    I’m not sure how popular some of these governments are. See Ukraine, Libya, Iraq, &c.

  83. Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg says:

    I still can’t get my head around this: The US is supporting the most fanatical elements of an Arab society – pretty much openly – and yet people are all worked up about Russia. I mean…who the heck believes that Trump is a Russian mole? It’s right out of Idiocracy.
    I blame the media gleischaltung of the 90s (Oh- I’m sorry- that was ‘deregulation’ wasn’t it? Good for competition, that’s right) that was pushed by the first Clinton administration. The reign of George II only exacerbated it.
    It’s really crazy that we have a plethora of well informed alternate sources online, but people are still getting their ‘guidance’ from CNN, Fox and the rest and the phony ‘liberal/conservative’ Punch and Judy show. If someone cited this blog on MSNBC, Racheal Maddow would screech about ‘conspiracy theory’.

  84. different clue says:

    Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg,
    Many Clintonite Leaders and their MSM spokesfolk sell it. And their Clintonite followers believe it.

  85. trinlae says:

    Or worse, the qualifications for elected congressional office have eroded such that basic competencies in history, miltary history, geography, global economics etc let alone the law, are of no interest to the ALEC purses whose sole requirement is one who will pass pre-written legislative bills after the required wine, dine, and PAC donation, and similar expectations of the meek and eunich public in tow. In election campaigns we rarely see disclosure or even argument on the basis of fundamental qualifications and lack thereof for the office. In other words, who is vetting the people sitting on the committees supposedly vetting the executive and administrative appointments?

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