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  • News of the Day

    Todays headlines,along with editorial comment:

    Killer gas pushes toll to 117
    Brazil voters Salsa to the left
    TURTLE LOVE
    Maryland urged to let others do sniper trial
    FBI's Anthrax loner theory is doubted

    These comments are solely the opinion of the editor:

  • #2
    It was a tough situation in Russia. They needed to quickly disable the terrorist but not sure why they had to kill so many hostages too.

    I don't think the FBI and law enforcement did a good job with the sniper investigation. It seems the two snipers pretty much gave themselves up. Even then they had to call several times just to make contact. If they had kept their mouth shut this would of gone on for months.

    Why did they keep focusing on a white van? Even if they had used a white van it wouldn't be that difficult to change vehicules. These guys probably drove right past the road blocks while some ATF agent was stinking a machine gun in the face of a plummer.
    "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

    Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

    Comment


    • #3
      Chuck...

      Chuck,

      I don' think Russian security forces had intentionally killed the hostages to end the terrorists' brazen attempt at demanding the Chechen independence. It's more due to the unknown gas' side effects. In fact, I believe that in the final moments of hostage crisis, some terrorists may have gotten off a few shots, though, I'm not so sure about "a few shots" because the women who were strapped with bombs didn't explode during the attack.

      As for FBI screwing up the sniper investigation, it does disgust me greatly. We were lucky so far. I don't know where they got the information on that white van thing, but frankly, how in the hell did they knew about the blue Chevy car?

      As for the anthrax thing, I don't know what went wrong, but in any case, I believe it is possible that the person who started this mess may be already dead or disappeared and never to be seen again. Hopefully that was due to the excellent professional police work, but as usual, I'm quite dubious of their work anyway.

      I disagree with Maryland's insistence that the two suspects be prosecuted for the sniper charges. I read an article that says Maryland has weakest case of all states wrangling over which state gets to prosecute them. Personally for me, I would rather toss them to the bloodthristy sharks than facing a trial. Of course, they will get a "death-row peak" of being selected at random and tossed to a "random" shark.

      Dan
      Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

      "Aim small, miss small."

      Comment


      • #4
        In my opinion, the Krelim ordered the attack on the theater for political reasons. Rescuing the hostages was secondary to killing off the terrorists and sending a message to Chechen rebels and terrorists. When a HR mission is launched with any other objective other than rescuing the hostages, the innocent die. Egypt's Unit 777's assault on an airliner in 1985 is an example of this. The team went in shooting at anything that moved.

        This apparently was not the first time Russia employed a sedative militarily.

        Originally posted by Digger at The Real Deal Forum[/I]

        Komsomolskoye was interesting in that it was more an anti-criminal operation than an actual military operation - it was conducted in the same manner as most ops in Chechnya - surround the target then bring massive artillery and air support to bear. The gas was used on the fourth day against a group of Shamil Basiyev's fighters that were trying to link up with the main body of forces in the town. The 144th Chemical Regiment (Artillery) was given the order to fire a salvo of "unnamed" gas shells into their apparent staging area as the closest unit was an OMON battalion that was not equipped for a delaying action. Elements of the 98th VDD were sent by helo to cut off Basiyev's fighters, but one helo was shot down , and the rest abandoned the mission - finally a motorised rifle regiment equipped with BTR-80As, supported by T-90 (their first recorded use) MBTs was sent to stop them. The gas had limited effect but did serve to disorientate the Basiyev fighters, allowing them to be cut down and captured. (Contrary to popular belief, the Chechens did not fight to the death - that was a Russian trait).

        In Gudermes (the 2nd largest city in Chechnya) in 1999 (can't remember the exact date) their was a hostage situation at the town hall. Gudermes was at this time under Russian control, and the Chechen forces arrived in the town similarly to the approach they used to retake Groznyy in 1996 - on trains, and seized the main rail station etc etc. To resolve the situation, the Russians first used a "smoke like gas - we thought it was tear gas) but abandoned the assault after the pro-Russian mayor of Groznyy negotiated the release of the hostages in return for the safe passage of the Chechen fighters.
        The assault on the theater demonstrated why sedatives are not employed in hostage rescue operations. These kinds of agents depend on the size, age, and condition of each person that might be affected. Environmental conditions also play a factor. When they gased the theater, the Russian wanted to make sure all the terrorists were neutralized. The gas was used in a generalized manner than led to massive numbers of overdosage.

        The problem was further complicated by the military's failure to organize an extensive medical plan. Hospital officials were not informed about the nature of poisoning of the victims. They had to do alot of guessing, wasting time trying to find the right solution. By the time they did, many were dead.

        The Russians also failed to have a good evac plan. Many victims were not treated for until after the assault (45-60min). Many choked on their vomit, or tongue, or died of heart failure. While the Russian government might call this success, I believe many mistakes were made, and the mission was politically motivated.

        Statements made by President Putin suggest the Russian government never considered negotiating with the terrorists. They were more intent on ending the crisis quickly and eliminating a large Chechen terrorists cell. Furthermore, they wanted to make it clear to the terrorists that they weren't scared to risk their the lives of civilians to pursue them. (Something the Chechens should already know all too well.)

        I admit the number of hostages killed is about 85 less than I expected in a more conventional assault. The large number of people saved is indeeed an great achievement. However, the question I raise is what was the true goal of the raid? To me, I believe Putin was willing to gamble away the lives of most of the hostages to score against the terrorists. That's the wrong reason to conduct a hostage rescue mission.

        Hopefully, the world will study this raid to draw lessons learned. While I do believe sedative gas has a future in hostage rescue, it's time is not now. The gas is just too risky to employ.

        Posted by Cheetah772

        I disagree with Maryland's insistence that the two suspects be prosecuted for the sniper charges. I read an article that says Maryland has weakest case of all states wrangling over which state gets to prosecute them. Personally for me, I would rather toss them to the bloodthristy sharks than facing a trial. Of course, they will get a "death-row peak" of being selected at random and tossed to a "random" shark.
        I heard Maryland say's it has the strongest case against the sniper team. We could probably succeed in getting them tossed to to bloodthristy sharks if we can convince the courts it's a humane, rapid form of death. That's how the electric chair came about!
        "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Chuck...

          Originally posted by Cheetah772
          As for FBI screwing up the sniper investigation, it does disgust me greatly. We were lucky so far. I don't know where they got the information on that white van thing, but frankly, how in the hell did they knew about the blue Chevy car?
          I think one of the Snipers called and told the police that they were involved in a shooting in Montgomery, Alabama. At first they thought it was hoax but then a priest (who had talked to one of the snipers) called and repeated the same thing.

          Eventually evidence from this shooting in Montgomery pointed toward one of the snipers. Without this evidence the case goes nowhere. They would still be looking for a white van and scratching their heads every time they didn't find anything.
          "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

          Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

          Comment


          • #6
            While on the subject of snipers....

            Hello,

            I am just wondering, since we're on the subject of the sniper team's killing spree, just how much phsyical damage or psychological damage can a man with extensive sniper training do to anybody? We were lucky that while the older man was a Gulf veteran, he was a merely combat engineer (which proved to be lethal and a dangerous criminal tool in modifying the car to accommodate the sniper easier), he did not have extensive sniper training. Of course, I could be mistaken, though, I hate to admit, these sniper shots were clearly a mark of an excellent marksmanship on part of that man.

            At one point, I had actually thought it was a part of Al-Qaeda operation -- using a sniper team -- to study the police procedures and how quickly can the police respond to any emergency situation in order to use that advantage for a major terrorist strike across America. I guess that proves just how paranoid I can get...hehe. But you have to admit, it's an interesting thought. It's relatively cheap, and though, it doesn't do a lot of damage, but it can scare the people. As long, the terrorists don't brag or shut up about their activities, they could do a lot of damage for A LONG TIME.

            Thank God that ninety percent of criminals are so dumb enough to be actually committing crimes!

            Still, I don't think OBL wants snipering attacks, he would rather to have one-time BIG terrorist attack that promises a lot of body bags, and traumatize us for the rest of our lives. OBL got what he wanted on 9/11. On the other hand, OBL has shown a willingness to use snipers to pick off or assassinate important enemy leaders. It takes only one shot to kill our President, or our commanding general in charge of Afghanistan operations.

            Dan
            Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

            "Aim small, miss small."

            Comment


            • #7
              I heard that anyone can use a sniper rifle. I have this impression that sniper training emphasizes particularly on hiding and sneaking.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Cheetah772

                I am just wondering, since we're on the subject of the sniper team's killing spree, just how much phsyical damage or psychological damage can a man with extensive sniper training do to anybody? We were lucky that while the older man was a Gulf veteran, he was a merely combat engineer (which proved to be lethal and a dangerous criminal tool in modifying the car to accommodate the sniper easier), he did not have extensive sniper training. Of course, I could be mistaken, though, I hate to admit, these sniper shots were clearly a mark of an excellent marksmanship on part of that man.
                Originally posted by Twoblade

                I heard that anyone can use a sniper rifle. I have this impression that sniper training emphasizes particularly on hiding and sneaking.
                Sniper training focuses on more than just hidng and sneaking. Snipers are better at observing and waiting. They are trained to pickup what others might miss. In Tom Clancy's Book "Special Forces" there was a training exercise where an ODA had to take out a enemy commander. The team elected to use the snipers to observe and identify the target, and other operatives to take the shot.

                However, shootng is still very critical. Accurately taking long shots is both part science and part art. The science is solving a complex equation of many factors that effect your shot. The art is learning how to be patient and controlled enough not to allow human senses and factors to affect your capability. Rapid heartbeat or breathing, twitching, etc all effect your shot.

                In an urban environment, sniping becomes even more complicated. The Washington, DC sniper had only moments to select target, calculate conditions, take the shot, and exfil. I still question distance from target. There were few witnesses, but that didn't mean the suspects weren't obvious. People react to the onslaught of confusion, usually bypassing information like where the shot came from. It's a dramatic incident. The mind can play tricks on you. Two people can see the same thing, but describe it differently based on memory.

                The shooter was an expert with the M-16. So he could rapidly place his shots well at short to medium distances. He selected a .223 rifle because he was more familar with the ammunition, and could easily calculate various factors that are a part of accurate shooting.

                Originally posted by Cheetah772

                At one point, I had actually thought it was a part of Al-Qaeda operation -- using a sniper team -- to study the police procedures and how quickly can the police respond to any emergency situation in order to use that advantage for a major terrorist strike across America. I guess that proves just how paranoid I can get...hehe. But you have to admit, it's an interesting thought. It's relatively cheap, and though, it doesn't do a lot of damage, but it can scare the people. As long, the terrorists don't brag or shut up about their activities, they could do a lot of damage for A LONG TIME.

                Still, I don't think OBL wants snipering attacks, he would rather to have one-time BIG terrorist attack that promises a lot of body bags, and traumatize us for the rest of our lives. OBL got what he wanted on 9/11. On the other hand, OBL has shown a willingness to use snipers to pick off or assassinate important enemy leaders. It takes only one shot to kill our President, or our commanding general in charge of Afghanistan operations.
                Alot of people, including myself, were concerned that terrorists might be behind the shootings. The police did go up to the detaining center in Cuba to interview some of the detainees there about this. This form of terrorism would be perfect for Bin Laden. The goal is not to kill massive number of civilians, but to generate attention. The sniper shootings did just that. Afghanis are snipers by tradition. This is one of the reasons why the CIA ordered up the M82 .50-cal sniper rifle for the Mujhadeen rebels.
                Training footage of Al Qaeda terrorists training suggest this kind of random shooting is something they are preapared to carryout.

                THANK GOODNESS THIS WAS NOT THE CASE!!!!!!!!!!!

                The sniper team followed a well-known psychological path. They enjoyed the media attention, but were disappointed by the fact their names were not mentioned. I'm certain they were even more angry that the police seemed to be chasing white males specific to a more common profile. In response, the sniper team began leaving more trademarks of their work. However, it wasn't enough. Eventually, they made the fortunate mistake snipers like this made in the past. They revealed themselves, and basically admitted to the shootings. This is how others were caught. In one case, it took several years, but a mother of one of the sniper's victim put a letter in the newspaper ever annicersary of her son's death. Just like an idiot, he couldn't pass up the opportunity to "show his power and victory." Police captured him shortly thereafter.

                As for OBL assassinating high officials. Yes, that is VERY likely. However, the security around the President and other officials make this difficult. The visible men and women in suits talking into their risk represents a very small portion of the much larger security force present. Yet, no security force can ensure 100% protection from a determined individual prepared to die.

                It would be a stupid move though. Killing President Bush or General Tommy Franks will do little to hault the offensive against Al Qaeda and Bin Laden. If anything, such an act would inspire a more determined response. However, terrorists are far from rational in many instances. So I wouldn't put it past them.
                "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                Comment


                • #9
                  About Russia : the number of vitctims is terrible, but - what else could be done? The terrosist had enough explosive to blow the whole building to the moon. About the war in Chechnia in general, it looks like poor little people are massmurdered by the Russians while they are struggeling for independence , but you should take a second view on their leaders - slave traders and drug barons. You better compare them with the Serbian leaders in the last Balkan wars, or with the Taliban.

                  About the Washington snipers - let's hope this will not be a lesson for a new kind of terrorism. One or two men with a sniper rifle were able to terrorise a city with millions of people. Nobody was save anymore. Nobody can go out of the door without fear. Just imagine this happens in other cities again, organized by the a terrorsits group, each time another sniper. What a horror.
                  Resistance is futile!
                  My little company

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I also seriously doubt the range of the shootings. Any M16 (the bushmaster is the civvie version) is accurate to approx 600 yards. And the older sniper was a great marksman. But them saying that he pulled of the school shooting from the tree line is ridiculous. That is a half shot(obstucted partially) that is about 450 yards away. Also his escape path would have had him running across an open field. If he had a .50 or even a 5.56 i would belive it, but with a .223 its harder to believe. Lets face it, the guy wasnt too stealthy, but he had good get-away routes, and thats all that matters. To go out and call this man a sniper is an insult to the police and service men and women who do this, but "sniper scare" caught everyones attention. Perphaps insane marksman is more appropriate, but because it has no ring to it, he was called a sniper instead.

                    God bless America,
                    Dooley
                    Doesn't read Al Franken, can't watch Al Jazeera, will attack dumbasses. Anyone but Rumsfeld '04.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Headshot

                      To go out and call this man a sniper is an insult to the police and service men and women who do this, but "sniper scare" caught everyones attention.
                      You are largely correct Headshot. The shooter was far from a sniper as those in the military and law enforcement have come to understand the term. However, by definition, he did snipe his victims using cover and concealment to elude capture and commit his crimes. We might not find any honor in his actions, but that can't effect the term. We are what we are by actions, not just by terms.

                      Indeed snipers have worked hard to loose the dirty opinion many have carried about their tactics. Alot of people see sniping as unjust and unhumane. In fact, snipers are quite honorable and focus on saving lives. Their single shot can achieve the same effect as a 2,000lbs LGB without all the collateral damage.

                      The people in this case were snipers because they were cowards. They couldn't face their victims as other madmen have. We might generalize them as snipers, but in the end, we all know the truth. These people were dirty, rotten, no good cowards who would die of fear and fright if they went up against real snipers.

                      In a perfect world, I would be inclined to take Cheetah772's opinion to heart and feed them sharks. Yet, since the world is not perfect, as the killers has proven, we must look to other more humane methods of punishment. Humanity and compassion is what separates us from scum like these guys. That and honor.
                      "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Wow,talk about tough love!

                        Apparently Malvo's ex-wife and son are saying he deserves the death penalty if convicted.Whle refreshing to hear a suspect's like this family not whining and moaning about the unfairness of it all.It kind of makes you wonder what ever happened to family loyalty in this group.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Maybe the guy's an absolute jerk even to his own family. Love can turn to hate very easily.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Obviously this guy is a real piece of work. Not too surprising that his ex wants to see him fry.
                            "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

                            Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              hmm i have an idea for an execution. In honor of their world series victory. Every member of the Anaheim Angels will recieve an honory shot on the south lawn of the white house at malvo. The players will be given scoped COLT bushmasters and will lay in the open trunk of the presidential limo. I really dont know what is much more american than that. Although i wonder if Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin can hold a bushmaster. Ah forget it


                              :flag: :flag: :flag: :flag: :flag:
                              Doesn't read Al Franken, can't watch Al Jazeera, will attack dumbasses. Anyone but Rumsfeld '04.

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