We Are Argentina Now

We Are Argentina Now. By the Z-Man.

The Federal Reserve and European Central Bank have for a long time now been wrestling with a problem that is truly novel. They find themselves in an interest rate trap, which means they need to restore borrowing rates to something close to the historic norm, but doing so puts the global banking system at risk.

Most governments and mortgage holders cannot afford to pay the interest bills if interest rates return to historic norms, let alone the 20% rate required to stop inflation in 1979.

The political class is just as hooked on cheap money as the bankers, so their is no appetite for a Paul Volker like approach to solving the money problem in the West.

For a long time, the problems were abstract. Everyone knew that near zero interest rates would one day create big problems, but in the here and now they made all of the important people happy. The reckless and insane response to Covid by Western ruling classes moved the problem into the domain of reality. Massive spending by government put enormous amounts of cash into the hands of regular people, not just the bankers, and those regular people started spending it. …

For the last year, the Fed and ECB have been facing a problem. There is far too much money in the system and the demand for their money is in decline globally, which means they have to remove money from the system. They tried to ignore the problem by spinning yarns about inflation being transitory, but rocket high food bills made that story impossible to maintain. The politicians demanded the Fed “fix” the economy for them, so the Fed started to raise rates.

That is what brings us back to the interest rate trap. The entire Western banking system depends on exclusive access to cheap money….

Not just the banking system, but the modern welfare state and bloated bureaucracy. It is only the tide of newly money manufactured money, and the taxes on profits from rapidly rising asset prices, that has allowed government to get too big.

Over the weekend, the Fed with the Bank of Canada, the Bank of England, the Bank of Japan, the European Central Bank and the Swiss National Bank announced a global bailout of the Western banking system. They are offering unlimited cash in exchange for the illiquid assets on the bank’s books. The reason they did this is they know that every bank in the West has the same problem as Credit Suisse. That is their liabilities outweigh their assets so they are effectively broke.

Of course, you cannot fight inflation while showering the system with cash, which means the effort to rein in inflation has come to an end. The Fed will try to limit the swapping of bad assets for cash by substituting treasuries, but this sort of legerdemain is just so they can continue the game of make believe. High inflation is now the new normal in the West because it is impossible to raise rates.

The West has turned itself into Argentina through bad policy and worse politics.

New wave of inflation coming up. Redux?

Inflation in the 1970s came in three waves. This time around, many cannot afford the high interest rates that will be required to stop inflation, so the ending might be different. I see that bitcoin and gold did quite well in the last few weeks.

Btw, one response to the crisis of 2008 was that the banks (often) no longer have to value their assets at current market value, for the purpose of determining whether or not their assets are larger than their liabilities and thus whether they can continue operating.

For example, 10 year treasury bonds bought for $1m when overnight interest rates were 0% might only sell for $700k now that interest rates are 4%, but the bank continues to value them at $1m.

Suspension of the mark-to-market rule means that many banks that would have gone bankrupt in days gone by are now considered viable.

Cousin marriage doomed Bush’s effort to make Iraq into a democracy like us

Cousin marriage doomed Bush’s effort to make Iraq into a democracy like us. By Ed West.

Pointing out that between 46 and 53 percent of Iraqis who married did so to first or second cousins, [Steve] Sailer wrote that: ‘By fostering intense family loyalties and strong nepotistic urges’, cousin marriage ‘makes the development of civil society more difficult’. The neocon dream of jumpstarting democracy was therefore clearly doomed to failure.

Even those with a cursory knowledge of the country knew that Iraq was split between Sunni and Shia Arabs, as well as Kurds in the north, each group’s area of dominance roughly corresponding to three former Ottoman provinces. However, these were further subdivided into ‘smaller tribes, clans, and inbred extended families — each with their own alliances, rivals, and feuds’, in total about 150 tribes comprising some 2,000 clans.

Saddam’s politics were mired in blood, in both senses. He came from the al-Bu Nasir, a tribe comprising some 25,000 people based in the town of Tikrit, and his regime was filled with his relatives. …

The inevitable result of clannism is kin-based corruption whereby resources, positions and other rewards are monopolised by family groups. In these societies, Weiner wrote, ‘the nuclear family, with its revolutionary, individuating power, has yet to replace the extended lineage group as the principle framework for kinship or household organisation’. …

The cousin marriage question was later taken up … by Stanley Kurtz, who wrote: ‘Instead of encouraging cultural exchange, forging alliances, and mitigating tensions among competing groups, parallel-cousin marriage tends to wall off groups from one another and to encourage conflict between and among them.’

According to Kurtz, … western analysts purposely ignored the tribal nature of Arab society for political reasons, influenced by Edward Said’s Orientalism and anthropologist E.L. Peters, who argued that conflict in the region was not about who was related to whom, but about resources. ‘With many anthropologists already drawn to Marxism in the 1970s, Peters’s theory found a receptive audience,’ Kurtz wrote. But as an explanation of how the world works, Darwin usually trumps Marx. …

Countries without cousin marriage have far stronger civic institutions while in contrast extended families make civil society, honest government and democracy difficult, since the aim of each individual in attaining power is to help out his clan. Corruption is the norm because in such a scenario it makes no sense not to be corrupt, since everyone else will be helping their clan. That is why there is such a strong link between a country’s corruption levels, as measured by groups such as Transparency International, and the level of cousin marriage.

Christian culture banned cousin marriage:

Kurtz noted that this sort of clannishness was most common in Islamic societies, but rare in historically Christian countries. The reason for this is that the Western Church purposefully eroded the power of the clan for theological reasons (although materialist motives might explain some of it).

The link between Christianity (especially Catholicism) and low levels of clannishness is very strong …

The Church’s cousin marriage ban caused Europeans to become less clannish, with huge consequences for politics in later centuries. A 2012 study by Michael A Woodley and Edward Bell, called ‘Consanguinity as a Major Predictor of Levels of Democracy: A Study of 70 Nations’ found ‘that where consanguineous kinship networks are numerically predominant and have been made to share a common statehood, democracy is unlikely to develop’. …

Outmarriage changes the relative relatedness between individuals; a member of a clan is more closely related to a cousin than, say, an Englishman is to his cousin, while the Englishman is also more closely related to any random unrelated Englishman. Outmarriage also increases interaction with wider society and so ‘may change values towards a more general morality’. …

The incompatibility of the Middle East with European culture has more to do with cousin marriage than Islam:

After the 9/11 attacks it was understandable that many people attributed the Middle East’s various problems to Islam, but family structures explain far more. Where there is a religious link is that Islamic authorities were not determined to break these families, as the Catholic Church was.

The irony of Bush’s disastrous war is that, shocked by a religiously-inspired attack on American soil, he invaded a secular regime and handed the country, inevitably, to Islamists. Such movements emerge so successfully in clannish countries because religion is the only force that can overcome deep-seated tribal divisions. One of the attractions of political Islam is that Islam is seen — with good reason — as being a force for reducing corruption and improving public morals. …

[ISIS’s] greatest victory, the conquest of Mosul, exemplified the problems facing low-trust societies. The Americans had given the Iraqi Army a vast amount of money, some $25.5billion to supply 800,000 troops, over 4,000 armoured vehicles, 137 helicopters and 357 tanks. In Mosul in June 2014 they had more than 20,000 soldiers available, yet when just a few hundred ISIS rebels moved in, the Iraqi Army fled, leaving most of their weapons in the hands of the enemy. …

Hindsight and our ruling class:

On the invasion of Iraq the optimistic centre-Left and centre-Right, often the nicest and most reasonable people in the world, were woefully wrong; those on the fringes, including most self-declared socialists, were absolutely right.

I’m a great believer in history being a black comedy, and naturally almost all prominent advocates of the Iraq War have gone onto further career success, while Steve Sailer is even more of a fringe figure and one not mentioned in polite society (although any conservative worth reading, reads him.) …

Iraq … was a bloody disaster, and a reminder that politicians ought to read widely before they set upon sending other people to kill in order to make the world a better place.

Widespread cousin marriage also knocks a few points off the average IQ, which doesn’t help defeat corruption or promote democracy and trust.

Invading Iraq good, occupying Iraq disastrous

Invading Iraq good, occupying Iraq disastrous. By Joshua Mitchell, professor of political theory at Georgetown University.

Many reasons were given to justify the American invasion — WMDs, democratization, peace in the broader Middle East.

I confess to have supported the war, but on different grounds: Iraq has always been, with Egypt, an anchor point of Middle Eastern civilization. Prior to the Ba’ath takeover, Iraq had a rich political culture and a generally sophisticated people, who knew well their ancient pedigree.

I report this as someone who was, so to speak, once “in the field.” During the 2008-10 academic years, I took leave from my tenured position in the government department at Georgetown, and became the acting chancellor of the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani. The university today is one of the few success stories that came out of the war, and currently has an enrollment of over a thousand students.

During my two-year stay, I was thanked, almost to a man, that my country had toppled Saddam Hussein. The grim stories of his reign, of the suffering he took glee in inflicting on his own people, haunt me to this day. That was the reason I supported the war effort to oust him. I knew what Iraq had been, and what it could be again.

But after the gracious “thank you,” I heard about an American military, and about the host of parasite groups who came over to “help,” that damaged or destroyed almost everything they touched.

Elite idiots with no knowledge of real history, or of real geography outside the US, now run the show:

That is why American foreign policy is such a catastrophe, and has been for some time. Gone are the universities that once trained the area specialists who could inform the Pentagon, the State Department, and the CIA, that a plan it had devised was ill-advised because of the facts on the ground, which they, the area specialists, knew from a lifetime of study.

Today our universities in America teach students fear and guilt, but little else. They teach history to establish culpability, not to nourish understanding of the agonies and hopes of mankind.

What was once Area Studies has, since the end of the Cold War, become Comparative Politics; in this transformation, deep knowledge has been supplanted by social science pseudo-theories based on parochial and impoverished accounts of human action in society.

Into the moral vacuum that such social science produced has recently rushed identity politics, whose moral imperative is to establish who is owed and who owes. Hence, the fixation on diversity, equity, and inclusion — which are fancy names for retribution.

We no longer understand other nations of the world. Nor do we seem to care that we do not understand; all that matters in our universities is separating the pure from the impure, and purging the latter.

From this teaching is emerging a generation of incompetent leaders who will misjudge the world. Democratic peoples, Tocqueville wrote, will always look for a single measure, by which they can judge the whole world. Under President George W. Bush, that single measure was “freedom.” In the current regime of President Biden, that measure is “identity.” From this unsound frame of mind, we can only expect never-ending blunders.

Sigh. To judge by their indoctrination centers (aka universities), US leadership will be rubbish for at least another generation.

Democrats Vow To Arrest As Many Political Opponents As It Takes To Defeat Fascism

Democrats Vow To Arrest As Many Political Opponents As It Takes To Defeat Fascism. By the Babylon Bee.

In a press conference held in support of Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg yesterday, Democrats vowed to arrest as many political opponents as it would take to defeat fascism.

“Fascism is a clear and present danger in this country,” began Senator Chuck Schumer, “and the only way to defeat it is with a corrupt, all-powerful police state that can imprison anyone who disagrees with us politically. If we don’t do this, fascism will win.” …

Already, Democrat leaders are calling for the immediate arrests of dangerous fascists such as Trump, anyone who worked with him, and every American who ever expressed support for him. “These undesirables could implement horrible fascism at any time, so we need a final solution for them,” said Schumer.

At those words, an enthusiastic crowd of anti-fascist warriors cheered and fired guns into the air.

At publishing time, former President Trump was still at large. Authorities have advised he is armed and extremely dangerous in addition to being fascist. Anyone caught collaborating with him will be subject to imprisonment.

Republicans must relentlessly address the Democrats’ preferred election arrangements

Republicans must relentlessly address the Democrats’ preferred election arrangements. By Paul Gottfried.

It is almost impossible to do full justice to the record of corruption and disasters Joe Biden has accumulated in politics and most egregiously while occupying the White House.

From opening our southern border to floods of illegal aliens — including terrorists and drug cartels — to weaponizing the Justice Department against his political opponents, to creating inflation through cutting off energy sources and engaging in massive deficit spending, to pushing the gender mutilation of the young, to evidently taking tens of millions of dollars in bribes from the Chinese Communist Party, Biden may be the most reprehensible and corrupt individual who ever sat in the Oval Office.

That doesn’t even include his disastrous foreign policy decisions, especially the humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan that Biden alone was responsible for ordering. …

One may wonder how such a fool and knave could occupy the presidency, even if he is simply a front for the deep state, the media, and his corporate sponsors. …

Democrat Party forever — you know it’s inevitable:

What for me is even more disturbing than Biden’s despicable performance in the White House is the likelihood that he will be reelected. Unless certain actions are taken, we may be seeing a repeat of 2020 and 2022. …

John Zmirak suggests that we should ask this question of any Republican candidate for the presidency before endorsing him:

Is a candidate willing to admit that Democrats routinely engage in election fraud, and did so in a massive way in 2020, employing the lax voting rules smuggled in during the COVID panic?

Admitting this ugly fact will earn a candidate the earsplitting leftist dog-whistle ‘election denier,’ and might even get him sued by a billion-dollar corporation. It will turn off some big money interests, and unite our media in hostility to a forthright, courageous candidate. …

For example:

Pennsylvania has lots of drop boxes, into which Democratic operatives can dump their already filled-out ballots in the middle of night, early, and not particularly secure voting by mail, and no voter identification requirement. All these arrangements make it exceedingly easy for Democrats to manufacture votes.

Outcheat the Dems? Not a chance:

Republicans will, of course, have trouble getting back into office to change the voting laws. They won’t be able to outfox the more experienced Democrats as cheaters. And if Republicans try their own finagling, the media, which acts as the Democrats’ shock troops, will scream bloody murder.


Republicans must demand that we go back to the old rules of casting all votes at designated precincts in full sight of poll watchers from both major parties on the scheduled Election Day. They must refuse to participate in elections unless this happens ….

Given all the other obstacles that Republicans face, such as hostile media, the perpetual indignation of unmarried women, and the frenzied LGBTQ+ lobby, it is unrealistic to think they can win the presidency unless they relentlessly address the Democrats’ preferred election arrangements. Otherwise, Republicans can expect to get outsmarted once again.

Also, demand paper ballots and hand counting by people overseen by scrutineers from both sides. Count and recount until everyone agrees.

Republicans — don’t let the Dems bully and trick you out of insisting on this. If necessary, refuse to participate.

Winning the woke war

Winning the woke war. By Don Surber.

The reason lefty loons hate conservatives using woke as an adjective is the backlash against woke. The left is poisoning society with political correctness, with a poison that is worse than kryptonite because it almost killed Superman. Making him gay and an illegal alien crippled the comic because readers want a hero, not a propagandist.

That is changing.

Breitbart reported, “The upcoming Superman movie to be directed by James Gunn is set to restore the ‘American way’ portion of Superman’s ages-old motto after DC Comics removed the patriotic segment back in 2021.

“As Breitbart News reported in October of 2021, DC Comics dumped the Man of Steel’s ‘America’ replacing it with ‘a better tomorrow’ by rewriting the original slogan — ‘truth, justice, and the American way’ — to read ‘truth, justice, and a better tomorrow.’”

Welcome back to the USA, Clark Kent. …

Conservative entertainment critic Christian Toto told Fox, “The Superman motto restoration is a very minor item, but it didn’t happen in a vacuum. Hollywood is slowly realizing how off-putting woke theatrics can be, and the Biden economy is making studios pinch pennies in every possible way. If that means appeasing a huge swath of comic book fans eager for an old-school, all-American Superman, so be it.”

He also said, “We also saw this in the mostly apolitical Oscars ceremony. The message is finally hitting Hollywood. Stop dividing us and take a knee in the culture wars.” …

People are waking up to the woke game with its ever-changing rules, vigilante enforcers and lack of any respect for those who dare question their authority.

That’s not the American way. It’s good to see Superman is going back to defending the American way instead of promising a Stalinist better tomorrow.

The message to conservatives is clear. We can win these social wars. We do not have to accept the inevitability of losing our culture and heritage to people who oppose everything good about this country. Fight. That’s the American way.

The woke are only about 10% of the population. They just appear more numerous because they dominate Twitter, the media, and the universities.

Indicting former President Donald Trump could lead to the permanent destruction of the United States justice system

Indicting former President Donald Trump could lead to the permanent destruction of the United States justice system. By Matt Margolis, summarizing Tucker Carlson.

Although Carlson acknowledged that former presidents could be indicted if they have committed a crime, the undeniable fact is that Trump is the current frontrunner for the Republican nomination for president, and the abuse of the justice system by partisan prosecutors to take out a political opponent would be unprecedented and dangerous.

In fact, as Carlson pointed out, Alvin Bragg ran for district attorney on the promise that he would indict Trump. He has spent years trying to find a way to pin several various crimes on him, and he’s landed on the so-called “hush money” payment to Stormy Daniels — a payment the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) has already said isn’t even a campaign finance violation.

“The whole thing doesn’t make any sense at all on a legal level,” Carlson observed. “On a political level, it does because Trump is running for president.”

So we have a partisan Soros-backed prosecutor who promised to indict Trump and is potentially going to indict him over something that has long been deemed not a crime.

“If the Democratic Party is allowed to do this, allowed to crush the presidential front-runner, the main threat to their power, with a bogus criminal case, where does that leave us? We’re done because that precedent will live forever and voters will never again determine the outcome of a presidential election. It’s remarkable when you think about it,” Carlson said. “What happens if they get away with this? No one seems to be thinking this through. Everyone’s all spun up, but what happens if they get away with this? ”

Carlson continued, “If they use the Justice Department in full view of everyone to settle a political score and to keep the White House, just to take a guy out of the race who seems to be doing fairly well, we’ll destroy the justice system and that’s not a small thing. A functioning justice system has kept this country peaceful for hundreds of years. The purpose of a justice system is to administer justice so that citizens don’t have to do it themselves. You outsource that duty to the government. But what happens when you take that away, when there is no justice system?”

“What happens when the Department of Justice decides that its goal is not justice but protecting the ruling class at all costs?” Carlson asked. “Think about that. People are still going to demand justice. The desire for justice is an inherent human desire. We are born with it. But if there’s no neutral place to do it, some people will decide they’re going to have to do it themselves. Now, we don’t know exactly what that’s going to look like, but we can say for certain it’s going to be really ugly.”

“In Washington wrecking your own country is not considered a crime. Criticizing the ruling class, that’s what they indict you for.

The system of government in the US is on the verge of a major change, from which it will be hard to recover. The rest of the west may follow.

Former president is expected to be indicted Wednesday and Secret Service will make plans for his surrender and appearance in New York court next week

Former president is expected to be indicted Wednesday and Secret Service will make plans for his surrender and appearance in New York court next week. By Shawn Cohen for the Daily Mail.

Donald Trump will likely be indicted on Wednesday but won’t appear before a judge in New York until next week, DailyMail.com has learned.

‘There will be no arraignment this week,’ a source familiar with the proceedings told DailyMail.com exclusively on Tuesday.

The former president, who is currently in Florida, is expected to be formally charged tomorrow, after which the Manhattan District Attorney’s office will reach out to Trump and his Secret Service detail to make arrangements for his surrender, according to the insider.

He will then fly to New York where he will be arraigned, finger printed, and pose for his mug shot.

Donald Trump, Regime Foe

Donald Trump, Regime Foe. By Roger Kimball.

Almost everyone outside the most fetid fever swamps of anti-Trump mania thinks that the indictment, if it happens, is a patently political move and a gross violation of Trump’s due process rights. …

Section nine of Article I of the Constitution says that “No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.” Bills of attainder were used and abused by the English crown to target specific people or groups of which it disapproved. If a person was “attainted,” his civil rights were forfeit. He became a pariah. His property could be seized, and he could face imprisonment or execution.

We don’t acknowledge that we promulgate bills of attainder in this country, but that is essentially the judgment that has been pronounced against Donald Trump. It was the aim of Robert Mueller’s darkly farcical investigation, the purpose of Trump’s two impeachments, and the aim of the kangaroo court known as the House’s January 6 Select Committee, Liz Cheney (D-Georgetown) presiding. Her work there, she said, was to make sure that Donald Trump never got near the Oval Office again. …

Donald Trump has been singled out, he has been attainted, by the ruling elites of this country.

As Michael Anton pointed out last summer, “The people who really run the United States of America have made it clear that they can’t, and won’t, if they can help it, allow Donald Trump to be president again.”

What will the deep state do to prevent Trump from winning? Anton sketches several possibilities from having Trump declared ineligible because he allegedly sparked an “insurrection” on January 6, 2021 to simple cheating at the ballot box. Then there is Plan F.

What happens then? Well, in the words of the ‘Transition Integrity Project,’ a Soros-network-linked collection of regime hacks who in 2020 gamed out their strategy for preventing a Trump second term, the contest would become ‘a street fight, not a legal battle.’ Again, their words, not mine. But allow me to translate: The 2020 summer riots, but orders of magnitude larger, not to be called off until their people are secure in the White House.

I think that is eminently possible. And while I would rue the day it happened, I also believe that groveling and capitulating because you are intimidated by the possibility would be even worse.

Ruling class v. the people?

Is the medium term future for the West a relapse into a ruling class living high on the hog while the mass of deplorables are relatively poor and have limited prospects? Has democracy failed?

Biden’s Sinister Plan to Rig the 2024 Election for Democrats

Biden’s Sinister Plan to Rig the 2024 Election for Democrats. By Matt Margolis.

Roughly two years ago, President Biden issued an executive order that went relatively unnoticed and has been mostly forgotten by now, but which endangers the integrity of our elections.

Executive Order 14019 instructs federal agencies, some of which are unrelated to election administration, to collaborate with external private groups to “promote voter registration and voter participation.”

As innocuous as this sounds on its face, the White House is emulating billionaire Mark Zuckerberg’s efforts to influence the 2020 election and turning it into a publicly-funded operation. That’s right: who needs Zuckerbucks when taxpayers like you can fund Democrat voter outreach? …

Naturally, the Biden administration has been deliberately vague about the specifics of how government agencies will collaborate with these private groups to engage voters. But the 2024 election is fast approaching, and the White House has quietly disclosed some of the details of how it will repurpose government agencies into a massive taxpayer-funded “get-out-the-vote” operation for the Democrats. …

  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will promote voter registration for new citizens;
  • the Department of Education will connect student loan recipients to voter registration services;
  • the Indian Health Service will boost voting access for patients;
  • the Treasury Department will do the same for federal benefit recipients; and
  • the DOJ will promote voting for those exiting the criminal justice system. …

There’s nothing preventing the White House and partisan bureaucrats in federal agencies from hand-picking groups that favor “get-out-the-vote” activities for Democrats, ensuring their electoral victories for years to come.

Using state power for near-naked politicking happens when the ruling class stops competing amongst itself (Democrats vs Republicans), but sees itself as having common interests that are separate from the rest of the nation (elite vs deplorables).

Modern Urban Warfare: New and Different

Modern Urban Warfare: New and Different. By Jim Dunnigan. There is a lot more fighting in urban area now, and the urban areas have a lot more heavy concrete structures that act as bunkers. Training has become ever more necessary.

In Ukraine:

There was not a lot of bypassing cities and towns in Ukraine. Both sides found themselves forced to defend or fight for control of key towns that were essential to maintaining supply lines. Both sides never had enough artillery ammunition and aircraft bombs to simply level a contested urban area. …

When the Ukrainians go on the offensive they can surround towns and starve their less-motivated opponents into surrendering. When defending a town, the Ukrainians conduct a more effective defense that keeps Ukrainian casualties down and increases Russian losses. Experience so far shows that the Russians lost six or seven times more troops than the Ukrainians in these situations. …


NATO is very familiar with urban warfare … NATO has long considered MOUT [Military Operations on Urbanized Terrain] a major issue even after the end of the Cold War and after the post-2001 fighting, especially in Iraq. In the future, it was expected that there would be more fighting in urban areas, which means lots of sturdy buildings and narrow streets. The importance of MOUT was noted back during the 1980s when it was realized that … West Germany was rapidly urbanizing and the construction was largely cement and steel, creating structures that made better bunkers for defenders. …

A few years before the Cold War ended, the U.S. Army Center for Lessons Learned (CALL) was established so U.S. commanders could use it to determine what works in combat and what doesn’t based on past (decades or last week) experience. This is more important than ever in the 21st century, where urban combat and counter-insurgency conflicts dominate, and new technologies appear at a rapid rate. In urban warfare and counter-insurgency, the potential for mistakes to be made is exponentially larger than in conventional, large-scale warfare.


Another major problem with urban warfare has been having a decent place to train for it. The West solved this problem but the Russians could not because of budget problems. The U.S. Army and Marines began building training areas for MOUT at great expense. What drives the cost up is the need to install equipment so you can video most of the action, the better to critique the troops after they win, lose or are “killed.” And special building materials are used to allow the use of low power training bullets and practice hand grenades. …

One solution to the cost and availability problem is portable urban combat trainers called “Mobile MOUT.” Shipping containers were converted to modules that can be endlessly reconfigured for training.

The containers … have movable walls that allow quick reconfiguration for whatever MOUT training is desired. The containers can also be joined side-by-side, or stacked to create multi-story buildings. There are also reconfigurable stairways (open or enclosed), allowing the troops to learn to deal with the tricky business of fighting up and down stairwells. …

You can do a lot of training with just one or two containers, or build your own little town with up to 30 or 40 buildings composed of 100 or more containers. All the containers come equipped with cameras, microphones, motion detectors, smoke and smell generators. Everything is recorded in a digital format, both video and audio, for the after-action critique. …

There were actually a lot of MOUT operations in Afghanistan, as Special Forces or infantry stage raids on compounds suspected of harboring Taliban or al Qaeda fighters. Each MOUT training container cost about $140,000 (if you bought a 15-container set).

As a result of all this realistic training, both the Army and Marines developed new tactics for MOUT battles, and needed the specialized training areas to teach the troops how it’s done, and to work on improving current tactics and maintaining skills. One thing learned in Afghanistan was that you can’t have too much practice when it comes to MOUT. It’s a tricky business, with ample opportunity for getting ambushed, and for friendly fire losses. You must have well thought out, combat proven, drills, and the troops must be well practiced in their use. …

It turns out that with the revived emphasis on fighting modern combat forces and using MOUT, combat experience is invaluable for defending as well as attacking. The American solution is not to fight in the city like the Germans and Russians did in Stalingrad. Even during World War II, the Americans realized they had the firepower (bombers and artillery) to level any city that refused to surrender.

Islamic State:

This was how ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant) was driven out of Mosul and Raqqa. Even when forced into a MOUT situation, the Americans developed weapons, like tanks specially equipped for MOUT, and heavy use of smart bombs, guided missiles and GPS guided artillery shells. This last weapon was key to the 2017 defeat of ISIL in Raqqa, their capital in eastern Syria. The Kurds provided the ground forces but the U.S. supplied air support and, more importantly, a battery of 155mm howitzers firing GPS guided shells. There were several batteries (each with six towed howitzers) that were rotated into Syria for this support work. Some of those howitzers fired so many shells that the barrels wore out. The city fighting was most intense towards the end but all those precision weapons kept Kurd casualties down (about a thousand dead) while ISIL lost at least 3,000 dead and were forced out of the city.


The Russians learned the same lesson in Chechnya. In the early 1990s, they attempted to take the capital city (Grozny, or “dread” in English) and failed because the Chechens went full MOUT on them. The Russians came back in 1999 and took Grozny after turning the city into a pile of rubble. That took months …


The eastern European NATO members noted this with great interest, as did Chechnya southern neighbor Georgia. While independent after the Soviet Union fell apart in 1991, Georgia got into a border dispute with Russia that resulted in a brief Russian incursion in 2008. The Russians were described as “overrunning the country in a few days”. The Russians did not. They occupied the bits of Georgia they wanted and did not advance on the Georgian capital which the Russians knew would be stubbornly defended by “crazy Georgians.” Josef Stalin was a Georgian and is still a national hero in Georgia, not because he ruled the Soviet Union for three decades but because he got so many Russians killed.

War is just politics taken to extremes. Two hundred years ago, prominent German military theorist Carl von Clausewitz proposed his famous definition of war as “the continuation of politics by other means.”

It’s On: NYPD and Capitol Police Putting Up Barricades, Expecting Riots When Trump Is Arrested

It’s On: NYPD and Capitol Police Putting Up Barricades, Expecting Riots When Trump Is Arrested. By Robert Spencer.

America’s descent to banana republic status, with the ruling regime having its principal opponent arrested on bogus charges, may not happen on Tuesday, but it very much looks as if it is going to happen this week.

The New York City Police Department (NYPD) was busy on Monday setting up steel barriers outside the Manhattan Criminal Court as if it fully expects (and may even be hoping for) patriots to come out in force to protest against the destruction of our free republic and the weaponization of our justice system as a tool of partisan politics.

No one seems to be backing away from the brink.

In Washington, the Capitol Police are gearing up for riots as well. …

The JTTF’s [FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force] involvement immediately calls to mind Old Joe Biden’s statement from his infamous red-and-black speech from last Sept. 1: “Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic.”

That’s the closest an American president has ever come in the history of the United States to declaring that his primary opponent and his supporters were criminals who were outside the bounds of acceptable political discourse, and now the ruling elites seem ready to take the next step, not only of arresting Trump but of behaving as if his supporters were terrorists.

After all, Biden, Gestapo chief Merrick Garland, and the FBI have all told us that “white supremacists” constitute the greatest terror threat the nation faces today. The only thing lacking in their scenario is actual white supremacist terrorists.

That’s where Trump’s supporters come in; Leftists are rubbing their hands with glee at the prospect of protests against Trump’s arrest that they can weaponize the way they did Jan. 6, so as to continue their efforts to criminalize political dissent in the United States.

Let the day, or week, unfold.