A good Leviathan

Israel announced that production from its “Leviathan” oil and gas field has started. The platform started well production to mark the end of 2019.

Let pumping begin!

The Leviathan field is a large gas repository with reserves estimated as 40 years of Israel’s domestic needs. It is not the only field in production, the Tamar field adjacent to Leviathan had been brought online in 2011.

Up until the discovery and development of these two huge fields Israel had always been looked upon as and energy dependent Nation within a region of energy production plenty – and, ironically of course, – the Arab nations were the ones with the oil. So this does represent a major rebalancing of the scales of power within the region.

I must admit that my own naive hope here is that it can help lead to mutually beneficial partnerships between Israel and her neighbors. I find it incredible that the Palestinians, for example, are not working full time on developing much closer business relationships with Israel . After all if the Palestinian territories were to become much more affluent surely that would help the cause of peace? And, with affluence and peace comes a better life for all the residents of the area, Israeli and Palestinian.

If we look at the maps showing where the fields are and where the pipelines are it becomes obvious, I think that countries like Lebanon and Jordan could also benefit immensely from these developments and maybe the western part of Syria.

If Lebanon and the Palestinian territories can become much more self sufficient or even affluent in themselves it would go a long way to drawing down the influence of Iran or Saudi Arabia.

I do hope…

The right to self defense

I have to admit that the right to self defense is a bit of a hobby-horse of mine.

Any “constitution” or “Bill of Rights” or “Statement of Human rights” that does not affirm this most basic of rights is fatally flawed. If any human does not have the absolute right to defend their own life at  need then the rest of any list really does not matter.

But throughout many parts of the world the right to defend one’s life is conflated with the idea that it somehow means “vigilante justice” of some kind.

This is, patently, ludicrous. But am I wrong?

For example, it is a simple fact that sexual assault is a major problem in many societies. I happen to live in the USA and there is a constant barrage of op-eds and  reports about sexual assault in various areas.

It is another simple fact that men, for the most part are usually stronger and larger than women so any man who is inclined to be such a predator is going to find it easier to find targets that he can overwhelm. Note I said “easier” not “always”.

So why is it not standard practice to teach young women to carry a gun and to learn how to use it properly? I think all women should learn how to carry and use a firearm in their own defense and that training should be thorough. They should be encouraged to apply for a concealed carry permit (if needed in their state) and to carry their weapon all the time.

I also think that if I had a daughter or daughters I would sign them up at a very young age for Krav Maga training. The Israeli Defense Forces developed Krav Maga to train their troops – male and female – in self defense and to defeat abductors. It is a discipline that has been forged in real life.

The above does not mean that I think that boys and young men should not get trained and equipped, I think they should. I also think that good training would provide better discipline for young people.

But back to my statement at the start of this blog – I believe the first right any human being has is the right to defend her or his self from harm.

“we should rely on the police” is a retort that sometimes gets used. but the police are not there to protect me or to protect you they are there to keep society on an even keel . If you get hurt or, god forbid, murdered they will work assiduously to find those who did it. But they are not held responsible for failure to protect you.

Consider that for a minute. It is not the policeman’s job to protect YOU. That is YOUR job. Same as it is my job to protect MYSELF and to extend that protection to my family.

Being as it is my right and responsibility I (and you) should be afforded the ability to at least match and defeat the weapons that might be used against us. Whose choice should it be? Ours. it is OUR right and responsibility. So why do governments insist in getting in the way of this?

What public good does it serve to have citizens as walking targets?

Iranian tide must be turned

Iran is the latest incarnation of a “power” in the Middle East. It has been a center for an Empire and has been, for a long time, a powerful and sometimes baleful influence on the surrounding countries, tribes and economies.

Mohammed Rez Pahlavi Shah of Iran

In recent times probably the most successful engagement by the West was support for the Shah, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi who ruled Iran from 1941 until 1979. He was overthrown by a revolution led by Theocrats and Ruhollah Khomeini became the new leader of the “Islamic Republic” and the country has since been run by a religious leader (Ayatollah) via Religious Councils. The formation of a Revolutionary Guard military component under the control of the religious councils apart from the main military establishment has been a key in maintaining control – very similar to the set up of the regimes in both NAZI Germany and Soviet Russia.

Iran under the theocratic regime has devoted a large amount of money and resources to overseas activity. Their Revolutionary Guards special forces – Quds Force is active in enabling terror cells and resistance organizations throughout the Middle East.

It is worth noting here that Iran is run by clerics of the Shia “wing” of Islam. Shia Muslims are the smaller of the two larger sects of Islam. They comprise between 10 and 15% of the total number of Muslims. The bigger Sect are the Sunni Muslims – comprising somewhere around 80% of the total of Muslims in the world. Iran is the center of Shia with a population that has about a third of the total Shia muslims of the world.

The difference between Shia and Sunni , while important to the believers in both camps, is not really within the scope of this post. The reason I bring it up is that some of what Iran does needs to be viewed from the religious angle and their support of Shia communities in countries where they are in the minority. Iran also utilizes Shia paramilitary groups (like Hezbollah) in its on-going fight against Israel.

Young ladies studying in Iran during the Shah

During the reign of the Shah, the US had good relations with Iran – and so did Israel. The country itself was fairly westernized in it’s social life – I have included a picture of women in the street in Teheran during the rein of Pahlavi and a different picture of women in the street under the current regime.

The current antagonistic stance between the USA and Iran is relatively recent. A point to bear in mind.

Iran is the second largest Middle East country just behind Egypt. https://www.globalfirepower.com/countries-listing-middle-east.asp lists Iran as the third most powerful military force in the Middle East with Turkey at the top, and Egypt second. Israel is listed as fourth. Iran is not a lightweight.

Quds Forces on parade in Iran

President Trump’s strategy all along has been to keep the pressure on Iran in the arena where it is most vulnerable – its economy. Iran has, since the revolution in 1979, been gradually altering the balance of power in the Middle east away from Israel and from Saudi Arabia by using it’s wealth, particularly oil, to finance and underwrite large scale paramilitary organizations like Hezbollah and Hamas. Iran dedicates more of its GDP to this endeavor than any other countries in the Middle East. By doing this it has enabled Hamas, for example, to build a large organization and equip it with rockets and armaments to threaten Israel directly, at the same time it has financed large scale recruitment and training for Hezbollah in Lebanon on Israel’s northern border.

Map showing the State of Israel and the surrounding countries with international borders, Gaza and West Bank, district boundaries, district capitals, major cities, main roads, railroads and airports.

That developed infrastructure enabled Iran to become a player in the Syrian conflict via its Hezbollah proxy. For those who do not know the Geography of the Middle East I have included a map which if you look at the north of Israel you will see that Iran has forces inimical to Israel in Syria and in Lebanon and also via Hamas in the West Bank in the center of Israel. IN short – that treasure has been widely spent to exert pressure on – and ultimately to destroy – the state of Israel.

Lest there be doubts about this – here are four quotes about the official Iranian line on Israel – taken from an article in The Atlantic


Ayatollah Ali Khamenei: “It is the mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to erase Israel from the map of the region.” (2001)

Yahya Rahim Safavi, the former commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps: “With God’s help the time has come for the Zionist regime’s death sentence.” (2008)

Mohammad Hassan Rahimian, Khamenei’s representative to the Moustazafan Foundation: “We have manufactured missiles that allow us, when necessary to replace [sic] Israel in its entirety with a big holocaust.” (2010)

Ahmad Alamolhoda, a member of the Assembly of Experts: “The destruction of Israel is the idea of the Islamic Revolution in Iran and is one of the pillars of the Iranian Islamic regime. We cannot claim that we have no intention of going to war with Israel.” (2013)

Iran is determined to destroy Israel. This is not some slogan – this is a policy they have been working on for 40 years.

Please bear this in mind – we sent billions of dollars under the Obama Administration in cash – in CASH! – to the Iranian government. Pallets of it. WE sent money to a regime that has stated and re-stated its aim is to destroy our closest ally in the Middle east.

I ask you to re-read the section that starts “Lest there be doubts…” again because it needs to be crystal clear to us all that President Trump needs to be supported by all of us while he navigates the waters here. No-one wants to go to war. But the message has to be driven home to the leadership of Iran at the every option short of that is on the table.

The only way for the sanctions to have a real and lasting effect on Iran is for them to force the Iranian regime to divert funds from its terrorist infrastructure and back to it’s own people. Seriously. The Iran regime will only start responding to the sanctions when the unhappiness with the situation inside Iran starts to threaten the regime’s existence.

Iran has its own internal pressures to deal with and those pressures will only increase the longer it all goes on.

We need to support President Trump on this – we need to start loudly pointing out to our European “allies” that their continuing to play footsy with this regime is barbaric and unconscionable and it needs to stop. Only by shutting off their spigot can we get Iran to change its course.

The alternative if we don’t stay with this all the way is – is war. We are negotiating and dealing with a regime whose greatest interest is the destruction of another country. Not the well being of its own people or country – but the destruction of another country. Remember that.

Reaching peak

Well. I finally reached peak anti-Trump “Hitler”.

I read an article in The Times of Israel about Moore’s new “documentary” in which Moore throws around comparisons of Trump to Hitler. The problem is, in the article, there isn’t anything actually said that describes precisely WHAT it is that makes comparisons between Donald Trump and Adolf Hitler seem valid.


It caused me to realize that is a watershed moment for me in the constant barrage of sewerage about Donald Trump being Hitler or acting like Hitler or being a wannabe Dictator or being a threat to the lives and well being of innocent Americans.

I have always assumed that rational people across the spectrum of USA society understand that the hyperbole and hysteria is just that – hyperbole and hysteria. But seeing the Times of Israel actually giving a mention of such dreck by the Porcine Moore made me realize that this stuff needs to be forcibly ground into fertilizer. Repeatedly.

There are a number of things that are offensive about this sickening pandering by people like Moore to try to throw a disgusting label at someone merely to make them seem bad for having been insulted. It is anti-semitism of course, no big surprise that the left in America is Anti-Semitic. It is also moronic, it is name calling at the level of kindergarteners. It is also ignorant – “those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it” is the quote that usually gets thrown in at this point – as I have just done so. And to cap it off – the people who post it do so in expression of their contempt for their own “followers” whom they consider too stupid to actually realize what is being done.

I’ll start with the first thing on my list. How is a Flabby White Rich Guy insulting Donald Trump being anti-semitic? How can this be?

Let’s analyze it.

I am assuming everyone knows the story of Adolf Hitler. Well everyone except for Michael Moore of course. He does not seem to have studied anything at all to do with the subject. Hitler, born in Austria, served on the Western Front in WWI and was part of the defeated German Army. After wandering around he settled in Munich and started developing his own socialist party. He used gangs of street thugs to break up the Free speech of others, organized his followers into almost military groupings and inspired a small (and unsuccessful) revolution which resulted in him going to jail.

Like many revolutionaries time in jail increased his ‘cred” and gave him a chance to write the book that would show the world what he wanted to do. The book is called Mein Kampf (My struggle) and would become the item that would signify to those who would follow Hitler that they were agreeing with an intellectual tour de force. Not just some sociopath who found he could inspire others by book pamphlet and speech. The book was no Tour de force. It is a turgid windy series of tedious lectures.

From those small beginning Hitler rose from being a small little agitator to militarizing an entire nation. He created mechanisms and institutions to terrify his own people and to control them. He created secret organizations to watch and report and act against anyone deemed disloyal. He built an entire military industrial organization controlled by The SS and used slave labor to produce the things that were needed. He promoted men into positions where they set about trying to exterminate an entire religion from the face of the earth – the Jewish people.

They turned genocide into an industrial process.

Hitler created a society where many people were trying to exterminate others. He plunged the world into war – again. German armies conquered most of Europe and brutally enforced NAZI rule.

It took the resources of an entire nation directed by sociopaths to work for years to accomplish all the horrors of NAZI Germany. It was not a whim. It didn’t happen overnight, it wasn’t a “tantrum” that got out of hand it was something that went on and on for over a decade.

I put that last paragraph in just to put it somewhat in context.

So when some bloviating ball of lard says he sees “hallmarks of Hitler” in regard to President Trump – that is what he is referring to. And it is beyond stupid and demented.

And, as I said, it is Anti-Semitic.

Moore – and the others who forward this garbage are trying to paint themselves as being the ‘victims” of a would be Hitler. Just like the Jews in the 1933 to 1945 era. The problem is they are not. The left is anti-Jewish and anti-Semitic. The left has a long and disgusting record of supporting terrorists who would destroy Israel.

And – frankly – part of their shtick on this subject is to downgrade and belittle what happened to the Jewish people in Europe during that time. By comparing themselves, poor widdle people who lost an election, as being the equivalent of 6 million people hunted down and hounded to death makes that grotesque stain on humanity appear to be commonplace. By trivializing its memory they are making the Jewish people targets again.

Thats why I call it anti-Semitism. I am not Jewish, just a supporter of Israel and of the rights of individuals and I am tired of seeing shameless people trying to promote their own version of victimhood on the backs of 6 million real victims of real evil.

Now to deal with “moronic” and “ignorant”.

People calling Donald Trump “Hitler” are being morons when they say it, just because they want to say something bad about Trump. They do not have anything realistic to complain about on the whole Hitler comparison because there isn’t one that can be made but they know that “Hitler – really bad” so they throw it around in the hope that others might no spot the fact that they are being total idiots.

And then there is “ignorance’. This is the most fascinating faction of these people. They do not have any idea of history – at all. Most of the time they do not understand that Hitler sought to control Germany using the tools of socialism. He named his party Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (translated it means National Socialist German Workers Party)in line with his own aims and beliefs. He created massive government entities to enforce compliance and punish resistance. He militarized the police and created secret courts that executed hundreds of thousands of German Citizens.

Where private companies did not work to what the NAZI Party wanted they created their own state run empires inside the country.

They created an overwhelmingly powerful state apparatus linked under the guiding hand of the Fuhrer.

People were rounded up in the middle of the night, secretly imprisoned. Many were executed or were sent to be worked to death in work camps.

Now before you allow someone to say “Trump is like Hitler” ask them to look around and see if they can see any of that crap going on in this country?

Challenge them to honestly tell of you of things they have personally seen that enable them to have this grotesque opinion that they are shouting.

Name one damned thing that they say Trump has done which warrants their baseless garbage?

Reduced taxes? More jobs? Reduced ridiculous rules put into effect by people trying to ram through their own ideologies to the detriment of the American people? How the hell is this like “Hitler”. It is the exact opposite.

I think there are valid criticisms that could be made of President Trump – he’s a good human being with all the flaws that come along with that. Criticize the flaw, offer arguments about better policy .

I am just annoyed beyond belief at the petty minded actions of a lot of people on the left who argue from ignorance and who mindlessly scream and attempt to drown out the debate of others.

And just as one little observation – when thugs in black coveralls and boots start attacking protests and carrying flags that are based on the same design and color scheme of the Nazi flag – and you have ignored them – you have lost all moral authority to call anyone a NAZI.