The John Batchelor Show

Monday 13 August 2018

Air Date: 
August 13, 2018
Battle for Ghazni leaves 100 Afghan troops, police dead

Artwork of a battle between Mahmud of Ghazni and Abu 'Ali Simjuri; from before 1318.  Today, Ghazni is controlled by Taliban, despite mendacious counterclaims by NATO and US forces. Unless enormous aid is provided immediately, the death toll is likely to be many thousands of civilians. As the entire world except Washington acknowledges:
- Afghanistan: Battle-torn Ghazni residents 'can't find food' [or water] —BBC
- Govt plans to hand Ghazni over to Taliban: Activists  —
- Taliban ‘at Its Strongest Since 2001’, Batters Afghan Forces in Ghazni
- Taliban storm district in Afghanistan's Ghazni province  —Reuters
- En Afghanistan, les talibans à l’assaut de la ville-carrefour de Ghazni + Au moins 100 morts parmi les forces de sécurité pour défendre Ghazni en Afghanistan —Le Monde
- Taliban capture Afghan army base as forces struggle in Ghazni   Daring raid on military base shows strength of insurgency and weakness of army, which has been preoccupied with bloody battle for Ghazni — South China Morning Post
- ‘Chaos’ as Taliban clings to Afghan regional capital  — Taipei Times
- Ghazni attack: 70 policemen killed in Afghanistan’s provincial capital — Times of India
- Über 130 Tote nach Kämpfen um ostafghanische Stadt Ghazni  — Neue Zuercher Zeitung
- Battle for Ghazni leaves 100 Afghan troops, police dead — Dawn [Pakistan]
Co-host: Thaddeus McCotter, WJR, the Great Voice of the Great Lakes
Hour One
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 1, Block A: Tom Joscelyn, Senior Fellow, Foundation for Defense of Democracies; & Senior Editor for FDD's Long War Journal; and Bill Roggio, Long War Journal and FDD; in re: Ghazni is under Taliban control. Ghazni City is somewhat contested. Operation Resolute Support says it’s under full govt control – but also under a clearing operation. The fires: Resolute Support won't comment on them. Blocks on fire, looting, Taliban loitering casually on the street, not worried about anything like an air strike. Resolute Support issued a statement with photos showing the Afghan military far, far away in a mountainous region; can't even get its propaganda right.
Foreign fighters in Ghazni: Afgh Defense Min reported them, esp spoke of Pakistanis, Chechens, and Arabs.   “Disconnect the dots” analysis.   . . . AQIS (al Q in the Indian Subcontinent) has as principal mission to embed itself in the Taliban insurgency and resurrect the caliphate in Afghanistan. A win for Taliban anywhere in Afgh is a win for al Qaeda. 
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 1, Block B: Tom Joscelyn, Long War Journal and FDD; and Bill Roggio, Long War Journal and FDD; in re: As Taliban are assaulting Ghazni from there cardinal directions, regular army can't defend to the Afgh army sends in special ops, that under attack melted away. Remaining n forces retreated into mountains and got lost for several days, had to be recued. The elite corps.  Absent US forces, the Afgh mil is [incapable].  Al Qaeda. . . .  Kidnapped an Iranian dipl to negotiate.   Two 9/11 conspirators in Iran now, operating freely.
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 1, Block C: Gordon Chang, Daily Beast and Forbes,com, in re: Renminbi (6.89 = $1; below 7, it ‘s thought it may go into free fall and lead to a panic) sinking rapidly. (It once was 9 rmb to a dollar.) Currency depreciating because people have been dumping it.   Peer-to-peer lending in China subject of pubic protests; Xi, often compared to Winnie the Poo, has banned the Disney film Christopher Robin.  Cartoon of Tigger walking next to Pooh Bear along with pix of Obama and Xi walking several years ago; led to unusual sensitivity on the part of Xi Jinping, whose predicament at present is dicey and Xi is tetchy. For the moment, the US is strong and China is weak, except in the eyes of certain Americans.
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 1, Block D:  Josh Rogin, Washington Post, in re:  Google is bldg a censored search engine, Dragonfly, to use in China, which persecutes its own people and strangles information.  Meanwhile China is reneging on deals it made with the Trump Adm— rendering them untrustworthy.  Google been working on Dragonfly for a year, despite angst among its own employees, most of whom of course are unaware of the project.  Morally awful as well as being a bad business idea: your bz in China suddenly lives or dies at the whim of the Chinese Communist Party.  Oops.    Pitched battle over the future of the tech economy, id est, our future.  . . .  GGC: Need US president to give these companies a lot of backbone; could give an order: Do business in China or in the US, not both.  That’d clear it up fast.  JR: Might be better to have all the corporations work together to develop a strategy.
Hour Two
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 2, Block A:  John Fund, NRO, and David M Drucker, Washington Examiner, in re: Russiagate.
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 2, Block B:  David M Drucker, Washington Examiner, and John Fund, NRO, in re: Ohio-12. 
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 2, Block C: Malcolm Hoenlein, Conference of Presidents, in re: In Iran, ISIS activity – being trained and armed; ISIS is southern and northeast Syria..  Congressional estimates say 15,000 – others say more than double than.   Jordan is being infiltrated. Russian mil police set up eight outposts near the Syria-Israel border.  Iran agreed to be 65 km from the border, but Hezb are wearing Syrian army uniforms and moving in. Egypt working on some sort of Gaza solution maybe a Port Said. Industrial zone along the Sinai border.  PA continuing to pay terrorists and their families - $200,000, in some instances. US withdrawing some funds from UNNRWA.  . . . Both Iran and Turkey are in economic collapse, are denying their people needed investment I domestic economies and now limits on how much they can fund foreign fighters.
Monday   30 July 2018 / Hour 2, Block D: Indiana Hoenlein, Conference of Presidents, in re: The Great Synagogue of Vilnius, destroyed by the Nazis.
Hour Three
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 3, Block A: Andrew C McCarthy, Contributing Editor at National Review & Fellow at NR Institute; former Chief Asst U.S. Attorney, New York Southern District; in re: Legal, political, and [complex social] matters relating to/emanating from Russiagate.
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 3, Block B: Andrew C McCarthy, Contributing Editor at National Review & Fellow at NR Institute; former Chief Asst U.S. Attorney, New York Southern District; in re:  Legal, political, and [complex social] matters relating to/emanating from Russiagate.
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 3, Block C:  Robert Zimmerman,, in re:   NASA & space
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 3, Block D:  Robert Zimmerman,, in re:   NASA & space
Hour Four
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 4, Block A: George Neumayr , American Spectator, in re: It appears that Brennan and Strzok hired this bumptious fraud based on the recommendation of British intelligence.   Stefan Halper, the Cambridge University con man that the Obama administration hired to brush up against the Trump campaign, is not a household name, thanks to the Fake News media, which refuses to cover Spygate honestly. Had this fraud, who enriched himself for years at taxpayer expense (during the Obama administration he pulled down hundreds of thousands of dollars for phony-as-hell research projects at the Department of Defense), spied on a Democratic presidential candidate at the direction of a Republican administration, he would have reporters staked out in front of his house 24/7. As it is, the “Walrus,” as the Brits nicknamed him, can probably waddle around his “Virginia farm” (which was one of the places where he tried to entrap Carter Page) without any trouble from pesky journalists.
A few weeks ago, the media reported that the White House had ordered the FBI to disclose more information about Halper. Naturally, Justice Department officials are dragging their feet. So we still don’t know who hired Halper: Did John Brennan hire him? Or Peter Strzok? Did Brennan’s “working Langley group,” which had been meeting before the FBI investigation officially began in July 2016, discuss hiring Halper? Did Brennan’s gang get a recommendation from British intelligence to use Halper?
We know from existing press accounts that Halper, who ran a forum for British spies at Cambridge University, had ties to many, if not all, of the sorry players in this London-to-Langley farce. We also know from those accounts that Halper had been spying on Michael Flynn since 2014, around the time Flynn had left defense intelligence in the Obama administration and become persona non grata in the eyes of John Brennan for opposing his feeble approach to Islamic terrorism.
TAS has spoken to old colleagues of Halper and they describe him as “bumptious,” a “blowhard,” and an avaricious fraud who entered the Deep State through a door opened by his father-in-law at the CIA, Ray Cline. After Halper behaved foolishly during the 1980 Reagan campaign, he tried to . . .
Who Hired Stefan Halper?
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 4, Block B: Michael Ledeen, FDD, in re:  Iran & CIA. . . .  Dianne Feinstein had a personal driver* for twenty years, listed as an “office director” on payroll, who turned out to be a spy from Mainland China.  (Feinstein claimed the spy never had access to sensitive or classified information, although he was present in her car for twenty years as she received guests from around he world.)
 What can be done about the massive, decades-long failures of CIA and FBI?  Do what Sen. Daniel P. Moynihan recommended: clear them all out and start completely afresh.
* According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Feinstein was notified by the FBI that a man who had worked for her for nearly 20 years was a Chinese spy. The person was allowed to retire from her service and was never charged. He’s still active in the San Francisco area. Feinstein tried to downplay the significance of the incident. . . .  Who ordered the coverup? In 2013, the year that the FBI reportedly notified Feinstein about the spy, the FBI director was first Robert Mueller and then James Comey (who succeeded Mueller in September, 2013). 
The spy, it turned out, was not the only one in Feinstein’s office who enjoyed a special relationship with the Chinese Communist regime. An investigative report by the Federalist revealed Feinstein herself and her husband Richard Blum are buddies of top figures in the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). 
The couple are personal friends of China’s butcher, Jiang Zemin, the former head of the CCP. Feinstein was said to visit Jiang regularly in the 1980s. Jiang was responsible for the nationwide suppression of Falun Gong practitioners in 1999, who have been brutally murdered, tortured, raped, and their organs pillaged. Despite Jiang’s terrible human rights records, Feinstein has reportedly never renounced Jiang.
Why is Feinstein’s support of Jiang, an infamous dictator, so steadfast? Economic gains could be one factor. With Jiang’s help, Feinstein’s husband Blum was among the earliest American investors to form partnerships with the CCP. Before long, the rapidly rising wealth of Feinstein and Blum caught the U.S. media’s attention. According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, some critics worried that Feinstein’s ardent support for China’s interests “cannot help but benefit her husband’s efforts to earn profits there.” According to the New York Post, Blum has brokered deals over $100 million in China since 1996.
The CCP’s investment in Feinstein, of course, is super worthwhile. Feinstein is one of the most pro-China senators. She was in favor of granting most-favored-nation trading status to China in 1996. She also lead the efforts lobbying the World Trade Organization to accept China as a member in 1999 and advocating discontinuation of the annual congressional review of China’s human rights situation as a condition for most favored nation trading status.  Feinstein and Blum still travel to China each year. 
Some speculated the Chinese spy in Feinstein’s office wasn’t prosecuted because he supplied the CCP with “political intelligence and not classified information.” There’s a simpler explanation: everyone involved wanted this thing to go away so that it wouldn’t blow into a major political scandal. As a result, the spy got a get-out-of-jail-free card. . . .
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 4, Block C:  Human Game, the True Story of the "Great Escape" Murders and the Hunt for the Gestapo Gunmen, by Simon Read
Monday 30 July 2018/ Hour 4, Block D:  Human Game, the True Story of the "Great Escape" Murders and the Hunt for the Gestapo Gunmen, by Simon Read
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