Military Secrets And Scandals

Volunteers of the Derry Brigade of the Irish Republican Army armed with American-supplied weapons, an M60 general-purpose machine gun and an AR-15 assault rifle, British Occupied North of Ireland,
Volunteers of the Derry Brigade of the Irish Republican Army armed with American-supplied weapons, an M60 general-purpose machine gun and an AR-15 assault rifle, British Occupied North of Ireland, 1970s

For those of you interested in the performance of the United States Armed Forces over the last two decades, especially combating the invasion-born insurgent movements of Afghanistan and Iraq (and the many-headed hydra of militant political Islam that US and Coalition operations accelerated in growth and influence) the journalist James Fallows has a provocative opinion piece in the Atlantic magazine that makes for essential reading. Just as relevant is the varied responses of Fallows’ supporters and critics which can be found here. Meanwhile closer to home we discover through a Freedom of Information request in Britain that one of the highest ranking British officers to be killed in the war in the north-east of Ireland, the South African-reared Lieutenant Colonel Ian Douglas Corden-Lloyd OBE MC (commander of the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Green Jackets regiment and at one stage a rumoured member of the much-despised SAS special forces unit), died when an Aérospatiale Gazelle helicopter-gunship he was travelling in crashed while under fire from an Active Service Unit of the South Armagh Brigade of the (Provisional) Irish Republican Army in February of 1978. What makes this story interesting is the denial by the British military and civil authorities for the last thirty years that the aircraft had been lost to enemy action while providing air cover with a Westland Scout light chopper to British soldiers pinned down near the village of Jonesborough. As with most aspects of any war it is time that reveals all.

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26 comments

  1. Very good article. It raises many very valid points. As some of the comments indicate, the effectiveness of the U.S. military is mostly curtailed by the impossible social and/or political ambition that is placed behind its campaigns. The correctly assessed lack of understanding (education) regarding the military, and what it has to endure, directly contribute to the enormity of the stipulated nonsensical goals. The simple purpose for the military and its relatively simple scope of objectives is obfuscated and complicated to the point where no mission can be a success, no matter how sophisticated or technologically advanced the military force is. The history of virtually every U.S. military ambition ending in near total abject failure since the Korean war (and even that one is debatable in terms of success) is evidence of that. Where it did not fail, the campaign goals were restricted to a simple, purely military endeavor (Panama, Desert Storm). As for the “Long War” in the occupied northern territories, the Brits did an excellent job in keeping it all nice and quiet, with very little information leaking to the rest of the world. For most people in the remainder of Europe and the world, there were only a few, very sporadic, instances of “home-grown” terrorism perpetrated by more criminally than politically motivated crackpots after 1989. They kept most of the hard hits against their military top secret, to avoid giving any credit to the different IRA factions. This prevented any real public notion of success by those factions, and kept a nice lid on their own misdeeds.

    1. Did you know that, unlike Ukrainian territories that have been occupied by Russian barbarians, no one considers NI to be an occupied territory?

        1. So you’re one of those “useful idiots” who hate the USA and/or “the Western commercial media” and that’s why believe everything Russia and other shit-countries spew out?

          1. You deserve a bullet for the anti-irish bile spouted by your ilk and when Russia invades latvia again I’m not going to be shedding tears due to scumbags who thinks his own language is better plus makes lies while repeating them. People like you will be the downfall of western civilization which is quite a shame since there are many redeeming characteristics so shut the fuck up.

            1. Mark, cool the jets 🙂

              Jānis is entitled to his opinions. They are sometimes wrong opinions, and they certainly make one shake one’s head, however it is good to have others to test our views against. Nothing wrong with the odd philosophical challenge 😉

      1. Iran does.
        Hezbollah does.
        Palestians do.
        And a fair whack of those 36 million Irish Americans do
        Not to mention Irish nationalists in the 32 Counties.
        And our Gallant Allies in Europe,France, Germany, Spain,Italy have no real love for the British State.
        You need to get out more Janis. Visit the Basque Country is Spain, or the ANC in South Africa.Or even South Korea.
        Might I also add,the president of China is a GAA hurling fan..When he visited Ireland he asked Edna Kenny about a UI.
        China views Taiwan as the Irish nationalists view the 6 Counties.
        But you are very right..that the international community, in the shape of it’s politicians has a dual attitude to the gerrymander of a border in Ireland and the event in Ukraine.

        1. But didn’t the Good Friday Agreement establish that both the unionist and nationalist views are equally valid?
          And that NI will be handed over to Ireland as soon as the majorities of both Ireland’s and NI’s populations wish so?
          So it only makes sense for all other countries to follow that agreement and recognise NI as a rightful part of the UK.

          The IRA have murdered so many people and destroyed so much property and that’s all they can, they don’t have a clue how to actually create wealth and prosperity – that’s why the best answer I got here was – “We’ll use other people’s money to subsidise NI after the reunification.”
          That’s the ultimate socialists’ answer to everything – “We’ll use other people’s money, because we have no clue how to make it ourselves”,

          Iran, Palestine, Hezbollah – you have a great company. I would not want to live anywhere near them (don’t want to be beheaded just because I don’t believe in their paedophile prophet).

          And funny that you mention those Plastic Paddies – most of them haven’t actually been to Ireland and have no clue what life is like over here – they have one thing in common with you though – they all are English monoglots.

          1. Jānis, we’ll use other people’s money along with our own to establish and integrate an island-wide state and economy, which will take some two decades to do so. Others will contribute towards it because it is in their interests to do so or because they have special geo-political interests in the success of the project: the British, the EU, the United States, etc.

            In that we are no different from any other post-conflict region or any territory/nation that has received funding, financing, donations or reparations under the EU/EC/EEC/Common Market and Council of Europe.

            Is Latvia a socialist utopia or in the same company as Iran and Hezbollah because it has received billions of euros of EU and CE funding since 2004 (grossly disproportionate to the amount it has contributed)? 9 billion euros per annum in FDI is possible for Latvia but not for Ireland?

            1. I’m already imagining crowds in the centre of Dublin chanting: “No way, we won’t pay!”

      2. I guess just about as many people view NI as an occupied territory as did Latvia when it was a willing and devoted part of the Soviet empire.

        1. The USA, The UK and most other civilised countries never recognised the Baltics as parts of the USSR and treated them as occupied territories.

          But no country currently recognises NI as part of Ireland.

          1. “The USA, The UK and most other civilised countries never recognised the Baltics as parts of the USSR and treated them as occupied territories…”
            ======================================================
            Really? Didn’t Stalin demand the return of the Free Polish Government in exile in London after WW2 ..And didn’t the Brits send some of them over to Stalin.
            What’s that if NOT recognition.
            Also Churchill did a deal with Stalin before the end of WW2 and he left those areas as a sphere of influence to Stalin.
            So, your comment is naive.
            Chuchill signed them over to Stalin.FFS

            1. My comment was about the Baltics not Poland.
              Poland has never been a part of the USSR, it was a separate country and a member of the Warsaw pact.
              Sure it was ruled by commies and was under influence of the USSR, but they still had more freedoms than the Baltics (they didn’t allow immigration from the USSR, for example).

              Churchill had no other choice because the Baltics were already under full Soviet control and it’s understandable that the Western allies didn’t want to start a war against the USSR to free them.

              1. “Churchill had no other choice because the Baltics were already under full Soviet control..”
                =================
                It’s a bit of a difference though than your earlier statement that the Brits and the USA didn’t recognize the Soviet control..Maybe they didn’t defacto but in the dejure sense they did.
                And that is just window dressing.
                Also, I have to say under the USSR , Moscow spent a lot of time locating industries in these countries. Poland had shipbuilding..Wasn’t Hungry a computing centre..etc.
                Ukraine was a country for aircraft. gas turbine and diesel engines.
                Under British Rule the Brits created Navigation Acts which in short helped to prevent Irish Trade with other parts of the Brit Empire.
                It’s one reason why Ireland remained poor for so long. If the Brits had only been as “horrible” to Ireland as the Russians were to you lot. ( notable exception was the planted North East of Ireland )
                BTW didn’t you say Latvia was a fairly rich country on the break up of the USSR?
                In 1922, Ireland was home to the worst slums in Europe..It would take Hitler’s Ghettos to take that record from us.So, the Irish experience is different from Latvia.
                Yet you still hate the Russians..But expect the Irish to “hug” the Brits. How so?

              2. BTW didn’t you say Latvia was a fairly rich country on the break up of the USSR?
                —————–
                Yes – it was richer than the rest of the USSR when it collapsed.
                But it also was way richer BEFORE the USSR occupied us.
                You know – socialists don’t know how to create wealth – they can only confiscate it from other people.
                And that was exactly what they did after the occupation.
                They confiscated most private property and land and forced people to work for the state and shot those who refused..
                The economic system they imposed upon us was just insane and very inefficient.
                There were endless shortages – people had to wait in line for hours to get basic necessities.
                And the Soviets also imported thousands of migrants from the rest of the USSR into Latvia and gave them apartments for free while the natives have to live in dorm rooms…

                Did you know that running a private company was a CRIMINAL offence in the USSR?

                And then of course there was the GULAG and WW2 where millions of people perished.

                And after the breakup we got NO COMPENSATION from Russia for all that.

                They’re calling us fascists all the time because we refuse to continue the colonial era policies instead.

              3. Janis.
                Under the Navigation Acts.
                Ireland couldn’t have a Merchant Navy..All goods had to travel on British ships.
                WE are an ISLAND..So you figure it out..How damaging that was.
                Second..If Ireland wanted to trade with a British colony..The ship had to leave Ireland,….sail to a British port…unload ALL it’s cargo..and get inspected.
                ALL this when cargo handling was done by hand!!!!! Do you have any idea how SLOW that was!!!!!!!!!!! Do you have any clue how much that set back Irish trade????
                Think about it.
                And then tell me how hard you had it.
                You HAD jobs..The Russians educated you.
                The Brits forced us into the dirt..and into emigration and slavery.
                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Navigation_Acts

                http://www.infoplease.com/encyclopedia/history/navigation-acts.html

              4. We had jobs and education before and after occupation too.
                And the soviets did not ley anyone out of the ussr – it was a giant prison. They shot anyone who tried to escape.
                And it was not possible for us to have merchant navy as well because everything was controlled by commies an sea was off limits to everyone.

                And we had no basic human rights because the secret police was allowed to do anything – they could arrest, search or simply murder you without any accountability

        2. OOps..Sorry I answered a comment meant for you.
          I think I need new glasses. Ta bron orm.
          It happened when I joined with ASF coz i was AMS..So i changed that.
          I shall try a new avatar.Coz me and you are both purple

    2. It’s that old bugbear, the military-industrial complex and a perpetual war that has become a MASSIVE source of profits for numerous companies and individuals. I would hazard a guess that the “war on terror” has created more millionaires than any war in US history since the aftermath of the Civil War simply because so much of it has been privatised or come to rely on private industries. That and the institutional instinct of the US military to grow and evolve. Hence all the recent finance and corruption scandals, rivalling those of the Cold War’s heyday.

      1. Even though I agree with the war on terror reaping some massive profits, I do not think it remotely compare to those gained from outsourcing parts and labor to countries that provide both by means of either effective or actual slavery, along with sheltering tax responsibility in multi-national complexes.

        1. Yes, but in terms of wealth accumulated by private individuals and corporations from an actual “fighting war” this must surely rank as one of the highest. WWII was a determining factor in the United States becoming an industrial powerhouse but much of that was the result of deliberate government policy, state-financing, war-bonds, etc. The “War on Terror” has seen the privatization of conflict and the combining of the military and corporations in the US to an extraordinary degree. Individual business people have become millionaires or incredibly wealthy as a direct result of the “war”. Meanwhile numerous “cranks” have scooped up substantial amounts of cash from the fringes of impossible to control budgets with all sorts of crazy business plans, claims of technological innovations, inside knowledge, think tank proposals, etc. And that’s just inside the US. Think global and the endemic corruption in Occupied Iraq and Afghanistan and subsequently.

          1. The increased individual profiteering of individuals over corporations is actually the crux of most of the problems in the U.S. It is tearing down the fabric of that nation.

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