Sunday, November 11, 2018

France's Macron speaks out ... Armistice could be undone by nationalism

French President Emmanuel Macron greets Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as he arrives at the Palais de l'Elysee in Paris, France Sunday November 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
 French President Emmanuel Macron greets Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as he arrives at the Palais de l'Elysee in Paris, France Sunday November 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

France's president used a global commemoration of the end of the First World War to remind leaders today that the peace forged a century ago can be easily undone by rising nationalism wrapped in the mask of patriotism.
Emmanuel Macron told a gathering of more than 60 world leaders, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, that those among them who call themselves nationalists threaten to erase the moral values a nation has by putting their own interests first regardless of the effects on others.
The message seemed directed at U.S. President Donald Trump, who in recent weeks described himself as a nationalist.
Trump and Macron said during a meeting Saturday that they had calmed stormy waters after the two sparred over a trans-Atlantic military alliance, better known as NATO, and the American president's continual unease about spending by member countries.
But Macron appeared to stir the seas anew in his speech, given as a cold rain pelted the French capital.

Macron warned how fragile peace can be in an age where the tensions that gave rise to four years of bloody battle, costing millions of lives, appear to be festering again. He told the assembled masses that the "traces of this war never went away."
He urged the leaders present to promise their peoples that the resurgent "old demons" would not be able to return, sowing "chaos and death."
"New ideologies manipulate religions, push a contagious obscurantism," he said. "Sometimes, history threatens to retake its tragic course and threaten our heritage of peace that we believed we had definitively settled with our ancestors' blood."

Macron, Trudeau and other leaders came to Paris hoping to use the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War to renew calls to quash festering tensions across the globe.
"There is a general sense and desire among many countries, including Canada to do whatever is possible to sustain the institutions of the international order and practical, multilateral co-operation. And so you see that in Canada, you see that in Germany," said Roland Paris, Trudeau's former foreign adviser.
"Macron (is) essentially making that point: that we can sustain co-operation, we must sustain co-operation."

Trudeau, who is on a 10-day trip across Europe and Asia, will come face-to-face with three of the nations sowing some of that tension: Trump, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping.Trudeau sat beside Putin and the pair briefly chatted at the opening session of a peace summit organized by Macron on Sunday afternoon. 
Trudeau spoke with Trump at a dinner Macron organized on Friday night — although government officials wouldn't say the exact topic of conversation. Trudeau will also attend summits this week in Asia that Putin and Xi are scheduled to attend.

Trump did not shake Trudeau's hand when he arrived with wife Melania at the iconic Arc de Triomphe. Neither Trump nor Putin walked a bit of the Champs-Elysee with other leaders after church bells rang out as the hour turned to 11 a.m. local time, marking the moment the guns fell silent across Europe a century ago.
Trudeau has had to navigate the mercurial American president, and on Sunday afternoon he will navigate that line again when he takes part in a panel discussion about freedom of the press — another group with whom Trump has frequently sparred.

The panel is part of Macron's peace forum, described by France's ambassador to Canada as intended to amplify the voices of non-governmental organizations and prod political leaders present to commit to Macron's call for peace.
"If you're not backed up by the highest political authority, nothing will happen," Kareen Rispal said in an interview Friday.
"You have to get the real commitment from the political leaders."
Rispal also said Trudeau's appearance at the Arc de Triomphe ceremony would be a reminder of Canada's contributions during the war.

Canada has a special relationship with France. It has always been a close friendship. Britain has always seemed like family and the rest of  the European countries have warm relations with us. A happy situation we would like to maintain. The United States has always been our closest ally and trading partner. We have enjoyed comradeship and trust between the two nations. We  have always admired their ideals, sense of justice and spirit of co-operation. We find we are moving away from them now as those things are changing and the US is becoming more militarized and nationalistic ( not to be mistaken for patriotic). It is more difficult to maintain our stand as peace makers, globalists and Paris Accord supporters with our neighbor moving in a different direction. Sad but true. America has lived the dogma of protectionism and /or isolationism in times past and found it does not work. It works even less in the 21st century.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Canada's epic battle you may never have heard of

In the foreground, a German machine gunner killed by the Canadians as they captured the French city of Valenciennes in early November, 1918.
 In the foreground, a German machine gunner killed by the Canadians as they captured the French city of Valenciennes in early November, 1918.
Canadian memories of the First World War generally stick to Vimy Ridge. Vimy Ridge is the site of Canada’s official First World War memorial, and it’s the only battlefield that’s made its way onto our currency and passports.
But while Vimy may have represented a rare victory in the war’s darkest depths, historians, military commanders and First World War veterans themselves were more inclined to believe that Canada’s greatest triumph would come at the war’s end.

Below, a quick primer on the Last Hundred Days, the epic Canada-dominated finale to the Great War.
The Last Hundred Days began on August 8, 1918 with an all-out attack on German positions in Amiens. By day’s end, Canadian soldiers had obliterated German defenses and advanced an incredible 13 kilometers. It was the most jaw-dropping allied victory ever seen in the First World War up to that point. For context, it had taken months of fighting and 500,000 dead to gain only eight kilometers of ground at Passchendaele. Up until this point, many First World War battles had followed a predictable pattern: A lengthy artillery barrage followed by fixed-bayonet human wave attacks across no-man’s-land.

At Amiens, Canada rolled out a strategy that prioritized speed and unpredictability above all else: Tanks, motorized machine guns, cavalry, storm troopers and intricately timed artillery barrages all thrown at the enemy in a dizzying tidal wave of force. Erich Ludendorff, who by this time had become the effective military dictator of Germany, referred to August 8 as the “black day” of the German army. As the Canadian breakout continued relentlessly into the autumn, Canadian Corps commander Arthur Currie would estimate that one quarter of all Germans on the Western Front were being shot at by Canadians. When German troops would sweep back into France in 1940, their new strategy of Blitzkrieg would be an eerily close carbon copy of the tactics that Canadians had used to evict them from France 21 years earlier.

The Germans may have explicitly avoided fighting Canadians until the very end. In the spring of 1918 Germany launched a last-ditch series of assaults designed to capture Paris and win the war before the United States army could show up in force. They devastated British lines to the Canadians’ north and French lines to the Canadians’ south, but the Canadians themselves eked out the offensive relatively untouched. This may have been intentional: Canadian soldiers were so fanatically committed to killing Germans. The British and French may have shared bread and chocolates with German troops during the famous Christmas Truce of 1914, but as soon as Canadian troops joined the war in 1915 they pursued Germany with “a vendetta which did not end until the war ended,” wrote the British war correspondent Philip Gibbs.

Instead of winning the war, Germany’s “Spring Offensive” had cost them tens of thousands of their best troops and had the unintended consequence of leaving Canada as one of the strongest armies left standing on the Western Front.

a group of people riding on the back of a horse drawn carriage: A tank used in the Battle of Amiens, the opening engagement of the Last Hundred Days.
Library and Archives Canada A tank used in the Battle of Amiens, the opening engagement of the Last Hundred Days. 
The Canadian Corps at the end of the First World War is still the deadliest fighting force ever fielded by Canada
As historian Jack Granatstein said in a recent lecture about the Last Hundred Days, the Canadian Corps in World War One’s final months “played the greatest role that any Canadian army has ever accomplished in any war we have participated in.” For one, Canada showed up to the Last Hundred Days with more of everything: More tanks, more artillery, more machine guns and more men. Even as hundreds of Canadians were claimed daily by machine guns or shellfire, they were able to constantly keep the ranks filled with fresh conscripts. Canadians also brought more poison gas. After the war, Arthur Currie estimated that at one point 90 per cent of all the poison gas deployed on the Western Front was being used by Canadians. By mid-1918, Canadians were also expertly seasoned by four years of war, something that gave them a notable advantage over allied armies just joining the war. In the war’s final months Canada would defeat 47 German divisions to the Americans’ 46, despite suffering less than half the casualties.
a group of people standing in front of a building: Canadians and Germans at a wound dressing station in the Battle of Amiens.
Library and Archives Canada Canadians and Germans at a wound dressing station in the Battle of Amiens. 
The cost in lives was worse than anything yet seen
The standard image of the First World War is of men leaping out of a muddy trench to seize the muddy trenches of the enemy. And this was indeed the general gist of World War One for most of its duration. But the Last Hundred Days looked more like the Second World War: Troops moving over open French countryside to seize towns, bridges and canals. The stalemate was over, but open warfare was far deadlier than trench warfare.
In the Last Hundred Days Canada suffered 45,835 killed, wounded or taken prisoner. It was equivalent to one fifth of Canada’s total casualties for the war, more than the 10,602 casualties suffered to take Vimy Ridge. More Canadians would be killed in the Last Hundred Days than in Korea or in the Second World War Canadian army from D-Day to VE Day. On September 1, 1918 alone, nearly 1,000 Canadians were killed in action. And these were coming from a largely agrarian country of eight million: 1000 casualties could represent an entire prairie city’s worth of young men.

A poetic symmetry overlay the end of the First World War. For one, the war ended at the easily remembered 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. And for Canadian soldiers, that war would end by retaking Mons, the Belgian town at which British forces had first encountered German troops in 1914. But both symbols would come at a terrible cost: Even with Canadian commanders knowing that the armistice was signed, troops would continue to be thrown into battle right up into 11 a.m.

And while the Canadians’ victory parade through Mons would provide stirring fodder for war artists, it did indeed kill men who would have otherwise returned home if the Canadian Corps had simply taken the morning off. The most notable was Saskatchewan conscript George Price, who was fatally hit by a German sniper at 10:58 a.m., becoming the last British Empire soldier to be killed in combat. “Hell of a note to think that would happen right when the war ended,” wrote his company commander.
We are forever grateful for their service and sacrifice to protect us and keep us safe and free.
a group of people standing in front of a building: Canadians in the centre of Mons on the morning of November 11, 1918. 
Canadians in the center of Mons on the morning of November 11, 1918. 


Friday, November 09, 2018

12 Dead in California Bar Shooting

Twelve people have died after a “maniac" gunman burst into a country and western bar in California and opened fire on hundreds of young revellers.
A police spokesman said 12 people died in the shooting, including one sergeant who rushed to the scene to confront the shooter.

The gunman, 28, was named by police as Ian David Long. He is said to be a veteran of the US Marine Corps.
Sheriff Geoff Dean said local police had previously had "minor interactions" with Long, who lives near the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California.
"We have no idea what the motive was at this point," he said.
Police said he wielded what appeared to be a legally-purchased, .45-caliber Glock handgun.

Ian David Long

Long was also found dead inside the bar after apparently turning his gun on himself, a Ventura County Sheriff spokesman said.
The gunman, clad from head to toe in black, opened fire on a crowd of people at the student bar with the handgun after setting off smoke bombs inside. Long, is said to have shot a bouncer before opening fire inside the bar

He is described as being be proficient with weapons, according to witnesses who fled the scene in terror. Sheriff Dean addressed reporters and said "this is an ongoing investigation and a tragic, tragic situation".
 He said the force received "multiple calls of shots being fired", and their first unit arrived within three minutes.
Upon entering the bar, sergeant Ron Helus, who had been on the force for 29 years and was due to retire, was struck multiple times with gunfire. Sheriff Geoff Dean of Ventura County hailed his deputy as a hero saying he went in to the bar to save lives.
He said: “Losing Ron is horrific and terrible. There are also parents of the 11 victims in there whose hearts were ripped out tonight. There is no way to describe this.
“Ron was a hard working, dedicated sheriff’s sergeant. He was totally committed. He gave his all and, as I told his wife, he died a hero. “He went in to save lives - to save other people.”
The officer was hit by “multiple shots” as soon as he entered the bar. His partner managed to drag him out of the restaurant.

In an earlier press briefing, Mr Dean said: "11 victims have been killed. The suspect was also dead inside and there were multiple other victims of different levels of injury who were rescued from the scene and taken to local hospitals.
"The numbers are upwards of 10 to 12 who, with minor injuries, fled the scene on their own.
"We have no idea if there is a terrorist link to this or not."
The Los Angeles Times reported that at least 30 shots were fired.

Tayler Whitler, 19, said she was inside the bar when a man walked in with his face partly covered by something resembling a ski mask, opened fire on a person working on the door, then began to shoot people at random.
Terrified victims hid under tables and in toilets, smashing windows to escape during the attack.
One witness said: “This maniac came in. Threw in smoke bombs to confuse people and opened fire on the dance floor. He’s taken many young lives.”

Witnesses ran to a nearby service station for help after shots were fired by the gunman, who reportedly threw smoke grenades around the dance floor area.
Reports suggest that some survivors of the deadly Las Vegas shooting, at Route 91 Harvest music festival, were in attendance during the shooting.  Imagine  how they must have felt to be present at another mass shooting.
A man outside of the bar said he had not heard from friends just yet, but was not too worried.
He said: "A lot of my friends survived Route 91. If they survived that, they will survive this."
Local media are reporting that the gunman walked up to a security guard and shot him before he opened fire in the building.
A statement from Ventura County Fire Department said: "Ongoing active shooter incident reported at
Borderline. Please stay away from area.
"Active law enforcement incident. Multiple injuries reported. Details still being determined. Multiple ambulances requested."

Police responded to the incident at 99 Rolling Oaks Drive at around 11.30pm local .  Borderline bar, a western-style bar with a dance floor, was holding a college country night on Wednesday night.
Nick Steinwender, student body president at nearby California Lutheran University, rushed to the scene when he heard about a shooting at the bar where he knew friends and fellow students were inside.
"It was chaos, people jumping out of windows, people hopping over gates to get out."
He said he heard from people inside that they were hiding in bathrooms and the attic of the bar.

Shootings of any kind are very rare in Thousand Oaks, a city of about 130,000 people about 40 miles north west of Los Angeles. Rare perhaps in Thousand Oaks...but happening with great regularity in the United States in it's present environment of divisiveness, confusion and hate.

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Orange Monkey's Sheep

Cheeto's Sheep headed to slaughter .
Come on Democrats  let show  the fools what and who we are  and what we stand for .
Together we stand  and we will take our country back .
The PIC's

Saturday, November 03, 2018

Friday, November 02, 2018

Press conference alleging Mueller sex assaults features no evidence, no victim

NBC News        BRANDY ZADROZNY               Nov 1st 2018 
Jacob Wohl, a pro-Trump conspiracy theorist, and Jack Burkman, a conservative lobbyist and radio host, stood in front of a half-full room of reporters and activists at a D.C. area Holiday Inn Thursday to detail their allegations of sexual misconduct against Robert Mueller, the special counsel probing Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The woman who they said has made those allegations, a Los Angeles native in her 30's, was slated to attend the press conference and give her own account. But, Wohl said, she feared for her life and on arriving in Washington, "panicked and boarded a flight to another location." Burkman promised she would appear at another press conference in the near future.

Wohl and Burkman took turns speaking at the podium, detailing the allegations, complimenting each other, and defending their professional records against charges of conspiracy peddling and political bias.

The conference was streamed by several reporters in the room. A pickup truck parked in the lot outside by protestors carried a giant inflatable rat wearing a blonde Trump toupee.

Earlier this week, several journalists reported on Twitter that they had received suspicious emails from a woman claiming someone had offered to pay her for making sexual misconduct allegations against Mueller. The journalists said those offers had come from SureFire Intelligence, a company NBC News connected to Jacob Wohl through telephone and domain records. Their claims were later bolstered by a second woman who came forward with an email offering similar payments in exchange for smearing Mueller, signed by a SureFire agent.

Burkman opened the press conference by addressing the controversy.

"None of this is true," Burkman said of the allegations he and Wohl had been involved in a plot.
"There were no offers of payment, there was no wrongdoing, there was no bribery, there was nothing illegal or untoward or unethical that took place here," Wohl said.

(Jack Burkman, a lawyer and Republican operative, and Jacob Wohl. Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

The special counsel's office asked the FBI to investigate the matter last week, after learning of the alleged plot to smear Mueller. Burkman and Wohl said they had not been contacted by the FBI. "I don't think the bureau would embarrass itself by calling us, talking about people that don't exist," Burkman said.

Wohl told reporters the woman making allegations had contacted Wohl with claims Mueller had sexually assaulted her in a New York City hotel room in August of 2010.

Explaining that his "default position" is "to not believe" women who come forward with allegations of sexual assault, Wohl told reporters that he found the woman now accusing Mueller credible. Wohl said that he met her after she hired his company SureFire Intelligence to handle "an estate matter." She later came back to him with the allegations.

Little is known about the woman allegedly making these allegations. After Wohl and Burkman went back and forth on the exact spelling of her name, Wohl described her as a fashion designer, who was "well-educated and comes from a good family."

"She is a gal who has an illustrious background and she is not politically oriented," Wohl said.

"We went through every meticulous detail of her allegation, we cross-referenced it with public records, we joined historical societies to get some of those records," he said. Wohl said they were "in the process" of going to police with Cass's allegations and would file a report by the end of next week.

Burkman then stepped in and said the decision would be "up to my client," and the evidence-gathering process was mid-investigation. "We have tentacles out in all directions gathering evidence," Burkman said.

They further claimed to have more victims whose stories they were currently vetting. "Hundreds of people have contacted us" this week, Wohl said.

Burkman is well-known for peddling baseless conspiracy theories surrounding the murder of Democratic aide Seth Rich and promoting bombshell information that never materializes. Last November — again at a Holiday Inn —Burkman sent reporters home without making good on what he had advertised as new allegations of sexual harassment against a member of Congress.

Likewise, Wohl, a former hedge fund manager now banned from the financial industry, has amplified prominent conspiracy theories as a writer for The Gateway Pundit, an often inaccurate right-wing website.

When Wohl and Burkman opened the floor to questions, the assembled reporters were unrestrained.

Wohl was asked about his political bias, specifically for his tweets attacking Mueller, including one where he wrote the special counsel should be sent to Guantanamo Bay. Wohl said his personal opinion had no effect on his professional handling of the investigation.

Other reporters questioned 20-year-old Wohl's experience in the intelligence gathering business and why he had lied to reporters days earlier when he denied having any part in the investigation. Burkman responded, calling Wohl "a child prodigy who has eclipsed Mozart."

At one point, Will Sommer from The Daily Beast said, "No one is discounting [the woman's] account. We didn't know her name until 20 minutes ago. We're questioning both you two very UN-credible people."

NBC News has elected not to publish the woman's name because she has not gone public, and because of concerns about Wohl and Burkman's credibility.

When questioned about a Washington Post account of Mueller at jury duty in D.C. on the date of the alleged incident in New York, Wohl accused the paper of reporting the story to discredit the woman.

When reporters laughed at Wohl's suggestion that "sometimes people go to jury duty, but they're also somewhere else," Wohl admonished the audience. "It's not funny. It's not a laughing matter," he said.

As the hour they had booked was almost up, Burkman announced he would take one more question. Someone from the back shouted, "Are you both prepared for federal prison?"

"No we are not," Burkman answered.

Witchy sez:
Trump is behind this. He is a liar who will stop at nothing. He will do anything. He has NO moral compass.   His ding dong is his compass and I believe it's pointing south.
After Tuesday it won't be able to point at all. He'll be neutered.  My impression is that Mueller will remain calm as he tightens the noose.
A crack investigator, or a master chess player -- the same, really.  Look at the quiet deliberation, the patience knowing the payoff is at the end, the well studied methodology and strategy . . .

Thursday, November 01, 2018

Where are you now Starman??

Image result for hilarious memes
Elon Musk's Tesla is still, hopefully, on it's journey to orbit the sun. It's cameras have stopped transmitting so space junkies are estimating it's whereabouts. Hopefully a telescope will pick up it's image one day. A shiny red car should stand out against the black void. Here's hoping it continues safely on it's peaceful exploration and doesn't crash land on Mars. It has been stated that is a possibility. Or it might get caught by the gravitational pull of another planet like Venus and never reach it's destination of orbiting the sun. Good luck little flying car. The folks back in 1958 wouldn't believe this.