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Tomconroy's Journal
Tomconroy's Journal
November 25, 2023

Apparently Hamas is delaying releasing hostages today. Supposedly Quatar is trying to mediate.


Hamas claims aid is not being allowed into northern Gaza. Israel says it is.

"#NEW - Ynet quotes an Israeli official responding to Hamas's claim and decision to delay the release of hostages.

The official says that more than 61 trucks of aid entered northern #Gaza, contrary to what Hamas said.

The official further warns that if the hostages aren't release by midnight today, Israel will resume its military operation in Gaza."

I think midnight in Israel is about 3pm est.

I don't know if aid trucks to northern Gaza was part of the original agreement.


November 17, 2023

WP: The Israeli Right Hopes not just for Victory in Gaza, but also for Conquest.

From the article:

A reckoning seems more imminent than before. Israeli forces have not just severely degraded Hamas’s military capacity in recent weeks, but also pulverized much of Gaza and even demolished some of its civic institutions, including the territory’s main parliament building, according to reports. “Hamas’ governing capabilities have been destroyed, and it seems increasingly likely that at a minimum its military capabilities will be curtailed to the point of setting it back to where it was 15 years ago when it had no real capability to threaten Israel from its territory,” observed Michael Koplow of the Israel Policy Forum. “While this does not mean that Hamas will have been completely destroyed, its control of Gaza already has.”

The question, then, is who or what will fill the breach. On the Israeli left, there’s real dread about the possible answer. “As the last 50 years have shown, any single settler’s hallucination should be taken seriously, and treated as a plan of action by the next government, if not the current one,” wrote Haaretz columnist Amira Hass. “And when the hallucination is built on overt plans for total destruction and mass expulsion, wars are the most suitable ground for its realization.”


November 17, 2023

Financial Times interview: The Future of the War in Ukraine.

The transcript of a long interview with Jack Watling, a highly regarded UK military expert on the future of the war for Ukraine. Well worth the read.
A few points:
1. The reason for the failure of the counteroffensive was a lack of trained officers who could command larger than company (100 men) level forces. (Something Gen. Zaluzheny referenced in the Economist)
2. Russia is planning for a three year war.
3. Europe must coordinate its industrial might to produce shells and barrels.
4. Talk of a ceasefire and negotiation with Russia is pointless now. Russia remains dedicated to the conquest of all of Ukraine.
Although the transcript starts a bit pessimistically, Mr. Watling believes the war is winnable if Ukraines allies can stay the course.

The transcript can be read by clicking through on the ft.com link. No paywall.


November 4, 2023

NY Times: Inside Poland Springs Hidden Attack on Water Rules It Didnt Like.

Perhaps the stupidest development of my lifetime is the rise of an industry that takes water from the same source you get from the tap, puts it in a throw a way, non recyclable plastic bottle and charges the gullible money for it.

When Maine lawmakers tried to rein in large-scale access to the state’s freshwater this year, the effort initially gained momentum. The state had just emerged from drought, and many Mainers were sympathetic to protecting their snow-fed lakes and streams.

Then a Wall Street-backed giant called BlueTriton stepped in.

BlueTriton isn’t a household name, but its products are. Americans today buy more bottled water than any other packaged drink, and BlueTriton owns many of the nation’s biggest brands, including Poland Spring, which is named after a natural spring in Maine that is no longer commercially viable.

Maine’s bill threatened BlueTriton’s access to the groundwater it bottles and sells. The legislation had already gotten a majority vote on the committee and was headed toward the full Legislature, when a lobbyist for BlueTriton proposed an amendment that would gut the entire bill."

Inside Poland Spring’s Hidden Attack on Water Rules It Didn’t Like https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2023/10/24/climate/maine-water-laws-blue-triton-poland-spring.html?unlocked_article_code=1.70w.FXfb.fgV04YhzBalk&smid=nytcore-android-share

November 3, 2023

NYT: US Drones are flying over Gaza to Aid Hostage recovery, officials say

"The U.S. military is flying surveillance drones over the Gaza Strip, according to two Defense Department officials and an analysis by The New York Times. The officials said the drones were being used to aid in hostage recovery efforts, indicating that the U.S. is more involved than previously known.

The aircraft are MQ-9 Reapers operated by U.S. Special Operations forces and were first spotted on Saturday on Flightradar24, a publicly accessible flight-tracking website, though Pentagon officials said that the aircraft have been active in the area since the days after the Oct. 7 surprise attack on Israel by Hamas.

While Israel frequently conducts reconnaissance flights over Gaza, U.S. defense officials said it was believed to be the first time that U.S. drones have flown missions over Gaza.

The flights are operating at a critical juncture. Israel is in the early stages of a ground invasion in Gaza and says Hamas is holding more than 240 hostages, 10 of whom are believed to be Americans."

U.S. Drones Are Flying Over Gaza to Aid in Hostage Recovery, Officials Say https://www.nytimes.com/2023/11/02/world/middleeast/israel-hamas-gaza-hostages-us.html?unlocked_article_code=1.7kw.A74u.s-FC6co2DgWO&smid=nytcore-android-share

Flight trackers are indicating the drones fly from the Mediterranean (presumably from a carrier) and circle south Gaza for three hours before departing. A half dozen are involved.

November 2, 2023

NYT: Ukraine's top commander says war has hit a 'stalemate'.

Ukraine’s Top Commander Says War Has Hit a ‘Stalemate’ https://www.nytimes.com/2023/11/02/world/europe/ukraine-zaluzhny-war.html?unlocked_article_code=1.7Uw.YcjA.7UZZDngHTqoI&smid=nytcore-android-share
No paywall.

"Ukraine’s top commander has acknowledged that his forces are locked in a “stalemate” with Russia along a front line that has barely shifted despite months of fierce fighting, and that no significant breakthrough was imminent. It is the most candid assessment so far by a leading Ukrainian official of the military’s stalled counteroffensive.

“Just like in the First World War we have reached the level of technology that puts us into a stalemate,” the commander, Gen. Valery Zaluzhny, told The Economist in an interview published on Wednesday. “There will most likely be no deep and beautiful breakthrough.”

His comments marked the first time a top Ukrainian commander said the fighting had reached an impasse, although General Zaluzhny added that breaking the deadlock could require technological advances to achieve air superiority and increase the effectiveness of artillery fire. He added that Russian forces, too, are incapable of advancing.

The general said modern technology and precision weapons on both sides were preventing troops from breaching enemy lines, including the expansive use of drones, and the ability to jam drones. He called for advances in electronic warfare as a way to break the deadlock."


“It was my mistake. Russia lost at least 150,000 people killed. In any other country, such losses would have stopped the war. But not in Russia, where life is cheap. In this sense, Putin's Russian Federation is truly an absolute anomaly. Even in former times, human lives in Russia were not valued as cheaply as they are now. For comparison, similar-scale losses in the Soviet-Finnish War forced even Stalin to stop and refuse to seize further territories. Putin continues to grind his citizens into minced meat without any sense, and they obediently go to slaughter."

November 1, 2023

The latest college campus fad:

“KIDNAPPED,” the posters say, in big block letters above pictures of people taken hostage by Hamas terrorists during the Oct. 7 attack in Israel, urgent reminders of the men, women and children still being held hostage in Gaza.

But on college campuses and in cities around the world in recent weeks, people have been caught tearing them down.

“You should be ashamed of yourselves,” a man says in a video posted on social media as he watches two young people at the University of Southern California shove wadded-up posters into the trash.

“They’re making the conflict worse,” one of the young people replies, adding, “I’m not a fan of Hamas.”

How Posters of Kidnapped Israelis Ignited a Firestorm on American Sidewalks https://www.nytimes.com/2023/10/31/nyregion/israel-gaza-kidnapped-poster-fight.html?unlocked_article_code=1.7Ew.R0pX.lk3RhCydgnpI&smid=nytcore-android-share

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Name: Tom Conroy
Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Current location: Langley, Virginia
Member since: Sat Mar 6, 2021, 08:56 PM
Number of posts: 7,611

About Tomconroy

Member of NAFO. Living large on an enormous CIA paycheck.
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