Wednesday, June 25, 2014

NYC: Shootings Increase After Stop And Frisk Discontinued

A quick story about ending stop and frisk in the bad neighborhoods of New York City and the possible results, shootings have increased...... 

June 25, 2014 9:25 p.m. ET
NYPD Studies Frisk-Decline Consequences

Review to Probe Uptick in Violence After Stop-and-Frisk Cutback
The New York Police Department is analyzing years of data to determine if the decline in the number of stop, question and frisks is having an impact on crime in the city, Commissioner William Bratton said Wednesday

The study comes as overall crime continues to decrease, but as the department grapples with an uptick this year in violence, particularly shootings, in certain neighborhoods.
"We have a very comprehensive analysis under way right now," Mr. Bratton said after an unrelated event at police headquarters. "At this juncture, we really don't know. Once that study is completed over the next several weeks, we'll have a better idea of that." 
Mr. Bratton has said in the past that he doesn't believe there is any correlation between the decreasing number of stops and shooting increases, but ordered the study anyway.
A law-enforcement official said the commissioner ordered the study earlier this week during a weekly meeting with NYPD three-star chiefs and top officials to discuss crime numbers. 
The NYPD is laying out its annual plan to deal with summer crime. Precincts that have been plagued by gun violence will be flooded with new recruits who graduate on Monday.
The official, who has direct knowledge of the meeting, said Mr. Bratton was concerned about the recent uptick in shootings and went around the room asking for solutions.
Unsatisfied with the answers, he ordered a study that looks at noticeable trends contributing to the uptick and if there is any correlation to the drop in 250 reports—the form officers fill out after conducting a stop. 
Some criminologists welcomed comprehensive analysis.
With the decreasing number of stops, "one should expect some increase in crime numbers," said Richard Rosenthal, a criminology professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, who published a 2014 study that said it was difficult to determine the relationship between stops and crime. 
"Crime has not shot up" citywide, he added, "so that suggests to me that the relationship between crime and stop-and-frisk may be pretty weak." 
The stops are a controversial tactic that Mayor Bill de Blasio has promised to change.
A federal court judge found that the NYPD was unconstitutionally using tactic to target minorities, particularly African-American and Hispanic men. The court installed a monitor to oversee changes and the decision is pending approval. 
The tactic's use peaked at more than 686,000 stops citywide in 2011 under former Commissioner Raymond Kelly, before it began significantly decreasing in the years after.
According to most recently available quarterly reports, police officers conducted 14,261 stops from Jan. 1 to March 31 of this year, compared with 99,788 for the same period in 2013, according to the NYPD. 
"Twenty years of crime data make it clear that stop-and-frisk is not the key to making our city safer," said Christopher Dunn, the New York Civil Liberties Union associate legal director. 
According crime numbers compiled through Sunday, the NYPD has received 48,754 reports for major crimes across the city—a 2.5% decrease from the same period last year. The number of shooting incidents has increased 11%.
A particular cause for concern is the increase in shootings in recent weeks, police officials said. 
In the past 28 days through Sunday, shooting incidents increased to 114 from 98, a 16% increase from the same period last year.
 Learn more about part of the problem, teen 'crews
and the video from the story follows

Dick Cheney Rebuts Bill Clinton on Iraq War

From the Article by the same name at Politico
Dick Cheney on Wednesday dismissed criticism of the Iraq war from Bill Clinton, saying the former president also believed that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.

“Well, I usually haven’t looked at Bill for advice. He doesn’t call me very often,” Cheney said on Fox News’ “Fox & Friends.”

Cheney’s response follows Clinton’s comments Tuesday in which he slammed the former vice president for Cheney’s own critique of the Obama administration’s handling of Iraq.

“I believe if they hadn’t gone into war in Iraq, none of this would be happening,” Clinton said in an interview with NBC’s David Gregory that will air Sunday on “Meet the Press.” “Mr. Cheney has been incredibly adroit for the last six years or so attacking the administration for not doing an adequate job of cleaning up the mess that he made. I think it’s unseemly.”

Bill Clinton warns of Iraqi WMD and the threat of Saddam Hussein
Clinton added, “And I give President Bush, by the way, a lot of credit for trying to stay out of this debate and letting other people work through it.”

On Fox, Cheney said that Clinton himself acknowledged the possibility of Hussein possessing WMD.

“He also warned about weapons of mass destruction and the possibility that if Saddam had them, which they believed he did, that he would some day use them,” Cheney said.

Clinton, while serving as president, did acknowledge the threat of Iraq’s nuclear program and in December 1998, he ordered the U.S. to strike military and security targets in the country after Iraq no longer cooperated with U.N. weapons inspections.

“Other countries possess weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles. With Saddam, there is one big difference: He has used them. Not once, but repeatedly,” Clinton said at the time in remarks explaining the strike, according to a CNN transcript. “The international community had little doubt then, and I have no doubt today, that left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will use these terrible weapons again.”

Clinton also warned that the U.S. must be prepared to use force again if Saddam Hussein took more threatening actions.

“And mark my words, he will develop weapons of mass destruction. He will deploy them, and he will use them,” Clinton said at the time.

More on Democrats, Iraq and WMD....

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Man Who Broke the Middle East

 The following article appeared in Politico on June 22,2014. While Barack Obama will never be held accountable for any malfeasance, malpractice or major miscalculations by the biased media, the sixth year into the Obama administration means Blaming Bush no longer works.  After 6 Years, the President cannot hide from HIS record and the current results of HIS actions and reactions /

The Man Who Broke the Middle East

There’s always Tunisia. Amid the smoking ruins of the Middle East, there is that one encouraging success story. But unfortunately for the Obama narratives, the president had about as much as to do with Tunisia’s turn toward democracy as he did with the World Cup rankings. Where administration policy has had an impact, the story is one of failure and danger.
The picture has been modified for editorial purposes  ..... 
The Middle East that Obama inherited in 2009 was largely at peace, for the surge in Iraq had beaten down the al Qaeda-linked groups. U.S. relations with traditional allies in the Gulf, Jordan, Israel and Egypt were very good. Iran was contained, its Revolutionary Guard forces at home. Today, terrorism has metastasized in Syria and Iraq, Jordan is at risk, the humanitarian toll is staggering, terrorist groups are growing fast and relations with U.S. allies are strained.

How did it happen? Begin with hubris: The new president told the world, in his Cairo speech in June 2009, that he had special expertise in understanding the entire world of Islam—knowledge “rooted in my own experience” because “I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed.” But President Obama wasn’t speaking that day in an imaginary location called “the world of Islam;” he was in Cairo, in the Arab Middle East, in a place where nothing counted more than power. “As a boy,” Obama told his listeners, “I spent several years in Indonesia and heard the call of the azaan at the break of dawn and the fall of dusk.” Nice touch, but Arab rulers were more interested in knowing whether as a man he heard the approaching sound of gunfire, saw the growing threat of al Qaeda from the Maghreb to the Arabian Peninsula, and understood the ambitions of the ayatollahs as Iran moved closer and closer to a bomb. 
Obama began with the view that there was no issue in the Middle East more central than the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Five years later he has lost the confidence of both Israeli and Palestinian leaders, and watched his second secretary of state squander endless efforts in a doomed quest for a comprehensive peace. Obama embittered relations with America’s closest ally in the region and achieved nothing whatsoever in the “peace process.” The end result in the summer of 2014 is to see the Palestinian Authority turn to a deal with Hamas for new elections that—if they are held, which admittedly is unlikely—would usher the terrorist group into a power-sharing deal. This is not progress. 
The most populous Arab country is Egypt, where Obama stuck too long with Hosni Mubarak as the Arab Spring arrived, and then with the Army, and then the Muslim Brotherhood President Mohammed Morsi, and now is embracing the Army again. Minor failings like the persecution of newspaper editors and leaders of American-backed NGOs, or the jailing of anyone critical of the powers-that-be at a given moment, were glossed over. When the Army removed an elected president, that was not really a “coup”—remember? And as the worm turned, we managed to offend every actor on Egypt’s political stage, from the military to the Islamists to the secular democratic activists. Who trusts us now on the Egyptian political scene? 
No one.
But these errors are minor when compared to those in Iraq and Syria. When the peaceful uprising against President Bashar al-Assad was brutally crushed, Obama said Assad must go; when Assad used sarin gas, Obama said this was intolerable and crossed a red line. But behind these words there was no American power, and speeches are cheap in the Middle East. Despite the urgings of all his top advisers (using the term loosely; he seems to ignore their advice)—Panetta at CIA and then Defense, Clinton at State, Petraeus at CIA, even Dempsey at the Pentagon—the president refused to give meaningful assistance to the Syrian nationalist rebels. Assistance was announced in June 2013 and then again in June 2014 (in the president’s West Point speech) but it is a minimal effort, far too small to match the presence of Hezbollah and Iranian Quds Force fighters in Syria. Arabs see this as a proxy war with Iran, but in the White House the key desire is to put all those nasty Middle Eastern wars behind us. So in the Middle East American power became a mirage, something no one could find—something enemies did not fear and allies could not count on. 
The humanitarian result has been tragic: At least 160,000 killed in Syria, perhaps eight million displaced. More than a million Syrian refugees in Lebanon (a country of four million people, before Obama added those Syrians), about a million and a quarter Syrian refugees in Jordan (population six million before Obama). Poison gas back on the world scene as a tolerated weapon, with Assad using chlorine gas systematically in “barrel bombs” this year and paying no price whatsoever for this and for his repeated attacks on civilian targets. Both of the key officials handling Syria for Obama—State Department special envoy Fred Hof and Ambassador Robert Ford—resigned in disgust when they could no longer defend Obama’s hands-off policy. Can Samantha Power be far behind, watching the mass killings and seeing her president respond to them with rhetoric?  
The result in security terms is even worse: the largest gathering of jihadis we have ever seen, 12,000 now and expanding.They come from all over the world, a jihadi Arab League, a jihadi EU, a jihadi U.N. Two or three thousand are from Europe, and an estimated 70 from the United States. When they go home, some no doubt disillusioned but many committed, experienced and well trained, “home” will be Milwaukee and Manchester and Marseille—and, as we see now on the front pages, to Mosul. When Obama took office there was no such phenomenon; it is his creation, the result of his passivity in Syria while Sunnis were being slaughtered by the Assad regime.

Read Page 2 at Politico Magazine 

Elliott Abrams is senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, D.C. He served as a deputy national security adviser in the administration of George W. Bush.

Blame Bush for the Iraq War?  What about Bush implying that Iraq had WMDs?
Democrat and former president Bill Clinton will enlighten us in he next video.  

Other prominent Democrats held strong views about Iraq and WMD. Take A look (video below)

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Barack Obama Hides Behind Signing Statements to Justify #Bergdahl / Taliban Swap

So, it turns out that the Obama administration was legally required to at least notify Congress before it actually traded Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for five Taliban terrorist commanders*: 
Lawmakers were not notified of the Guantanamo detainees’ transfer until after it occurred.
The law requires the defense secretary to notify relevant congressional committees at least 30 days before making any transfers of prisoners, to explain the reason and to provide assurances that those released would not be in a position to reengage in activities that could threaten the United States or its interests. 
And remember all that nonsense that the Democrats used to spout off about how awful signing statements were? Yeah, you already knew that it was nonsense: but watch, and marvel, as the Left continues to studiously ignore their past rhetoric on the subject. Because that all was apparently just pillow talk, baby: 
A senior administration official, agreeing to speak on the condition of anonymity to explain the timing of the congressional notification, acknowledged that the law was not followed. When he signed the law last year, Obama issued a signing statement contending that the notification requirement was an unconstitutional infringement on his powers as commander in chief and that he therefore could override it. 
Read more at Red State
Previous blog on the Bergdahl / Taliban swap.
Barack Obama Frees Top Taliban Commanders in Trade for Army Deserter

My blog on Obama and signing statements
Obama Uses A Signing Statement to Ignore Another Bill Passed by Congress

Barack Obama Frees Top Taliban Commanders in Trade for Army Deserter

At the peak of the Veterans Affairs scandal and after a cool reception at West Point for Barack Obama's commencement speech  comes news of the release of Bowe Bergdahl in a prisoner exchange for 5 top leaders of the Taliban from Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba.  Despite the legal requirement that Congress be notified of Gitmo transfers and a no-negotiations with terrorist policy, Barack Obama and his administration went ahead with the prisoner swap anyway. A trade for 5 top terrorists for a deserter  raises a few questions.  Some background on Bowe Bergdahl can be found in the following article, with the excerpt taken to establish Bergdahl's state of mind before leaving his base.....

From Michael Hasting's  Rollingstone Article: America's Last Prisoner of War
On June 27th, he sent what would be his final e-mai­l to his parents. It was a lengthy message documenting his complete disillusionment with the war effort. He opened it by addressing it simply to "mom, dad." 
"The future is too good to waste on lies," Bowe wrote. "And life is way too short to care for the damnation of others, as well as to spend it helping fools with their ideas that are wrong. I have seen their ideas and I am ashamed to even be american. The horror of the self-righteous arrogance that they thrive in. It is all revolting." 
The e-mail went on to list a series of complaints: Three good sergeants, Bowe said, had been forced to move to another company, and "one of the biggest shit bags is being put in charge of the team." His battalion commander was a "conceited old fool." The military system itself was broken: "In the US army you are cut down for being honest... but if you are a conceited brown nosing shit bag you will be allowed to do what ever you want, and you will be handed your higher rank... The system is wrong. I am ashamed to be an american. And the title of US soldier is just the lie of fools." The soldiers he actually admired were planning on leaving: "The US army is the biggest joke the world has to laugh at. It is the army of liars, backstabbers, fools, and bullies......
- Bowe Bergdahl then walked away from base without his military gear and was 'captured' by the Taliban or their allies. Bowe Bergdahl has been gone for 5 years and has been a propaganda coup for the Taliban. His release on Saturday was great news for his family and has thrown the spotlight on Bowe's father Bob and his conduct, some of which can be found on Twitter.

Now check out the father Bob Bergdahl.....

 Barack Obama promised to close Guantanamo Bay prison in his first year of office and has failed because of heavy opposition. By not placing any more enemy combatants in Gitmo and slowly releasing all the prisoners under many guises, Barack Obama and the leftists may get their wish, all by bypassing Congress, again. It would appear that Barack Obama and the Bergdahl's conduct are placing the country in even greater danger.