Featuring the works and commentary of Andrew Bruss

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Alleged Witch is an Alleged Criminal

Not-witch” Christine O’Donnell is under investigation for misusing campaign contributions according to the Associated Press. The failed embarrassment of a Tea Party candidate lost her bid to fill Joe Biden’s shoes as a U.S. Senator from Delaware and allegedly spent campaign contributions on herself in the process. 

The news was brought to the attention of the AP by an unnamed source, but since then, the U.S. Attorney’s office has confirmed they are investigating a complaint.

O’Donnell first shot to national attention after her endorsement by Sarah Palin gave her the boost needed to trump Republican Mike Castle for the party nomination.

O’Donnell hasn’t had a full time job in years and has consistently dodged questions regarding her source of income. Her anti-masturbation position was very unpopular and her loss to Democrat Chris Coons was her third failed run at the seat. One of her former aids recorded an automated message that accused her of “living on campaign donations — using them for rent and personal expenses, while leaving her workers unpaid and piling up thousands in debt.” The candidate allegedly used campaign contributions to pay rent because her home “doubled as campaign headquarters.”

Without a campaign chest to seep from, her current means of paying rent is unknown. 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

French Technology Seeps Into Iranian Military Machine

Much like the lamp oil in the Hanukkah narrative, Wikileaks recent dump of confidential diplomatic cables seems to be the resource that never runs dry. In a State Department memo obtained legally by andrewbruss.com, it has come to light that French technology sold to China is being delivered to the Islamic Republic for use in infrared sensors.

The French firm Sofradir has been selling cooled and uncooled infrared detectors to Chinese firm Zhejiang Dali Technology Company LTD for incorporation into thermal imaging systems. According to the memo, the State Department believes the Chinese firm is selling the thermal imaging systems to Iranian defense entities. The US fears the technology could increase the threat to the US and its allies in the Gulf region.

American diplomats were requested to make a request of action from their French counterparts.

No sanctions or diplomatic irregularities would prevent trade between French and Chinese companies, but the American request from the French demonstrates the intensity of the conflict between the Islamic Republic and “The Great Satan.” Stuxnet malware is reportedly destroying thousands of nuclear centrifuges. Iranian nuclear scientists are being gunned down in the streets. The Persian economy is under attack from UN sanctions. Russia has refused to sell Iran the advanced S-300 air-defense system, and now technology as common as infrared sensors are being held back from the Iranians.

Most Western thinking would suggest a dethawing of ties would make life for the Islamic Republic much easier, but as the Andrew Bruss of andrewbruss.com, something tells me this is closer to whacking a hornets nest with a wiffle ball bat.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Obama's Best Week Yet

Even cnn.com had to "break the news" of two bills passing at once
It’s been a banner week for the Obama administration, and it appears as though the kicking and screaming by the GOP has done nothing more than increases the productivity of their favorite Kenyan-born Islamic President. Lets take a look at the legislative accomplishments passed this very week during the so-called “lame duck” congressional session.

-Repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell: This was a two-for-one deal for Obama. The repeal of an ass-backwards law requiring gay soldiers to hide their sexuality was a campaign promise now honored, in addition to a civil rights milestone that will go down in history.

-New START: The Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) requires both Russia and the United States to cut their nuclear arsenals by a third and provide unheard of access to launch sites by “the other side.” Given the national security implications in this treaty, it required 2/3rds of the Senate to pass this treaty. Senator John Kerry worked hard to bring colleagues from across the isle on board, including fellow Bay State Senator, Republican Scott Brown, who lobbied his GOP cohorts to get behind a treaty every living Republican Secretary of State had endorsed.

-9/11 First Responders Bill: The brave men and women who spend months in the rubble of the Ground Zero have been getting sicker and sicker as a result of the air-born toxins they were exposed to. This bill ensures that Uncle Sam foots their health care bills. Some called the bill “needless spending,” but after a very personal lobbying campaign by NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in addition to visits to Washington from sick first-responders, the bill passed the same day as the START Treaty.

-Tax Breaks: Although this legislation wasn’t passed this week, it deserves mention. Plenty of left-wingers within the Democratic Party felt betrayed by the extension of Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest 2% of Americans, but this bill ensured support for an overwhelming percentage of Americans hit hard by the Great Recession. Prior to its passing, the GOP said they would block any and all legislative efforts that appeared before the Senate unless the Bush-era tax cuts were extended. Sometimes you have to make a deal with the devil, and if it were not for these extended tax cuts for all Americans, Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, START, and the 9/11 First Responders Bill would have been failed legislation.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Stuxnet virus “nearly as effective as a military strike.”

Photo from theisraelproject.org
It’s no secret that the Stuxnet virus was likely designed by a (Jewish?) state sponsor to target Iran’s nuclear program. The extent of the damage done by the malware is hard to gauge, but German computer consultants are now saying the virus has set the program back by two years. The virus was developed to attack German-made industrial equipment used by the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program, and the German computer consultant who first analyzed Stuxnet’s 15,000 lines of code has told the Jerusalem Post, “This was nearly as effective as a military strike, but even better since there are no fatalities and no full-blown war. From a military perspective, this was a huge success.”

The same German computer analyst told the Post, “It is extremely difficult to clean up installations from Stuxnet, and we know that Iran is no good in IT [information technology] security, and they are just beginning to learn what this all means,” he said. “Just to get their systems running again they have to get rid of the virus, and this will take time, and then they need to replace the equipment, and they have to rebuild the centrifuges at Natanz and possibly buy a new turbine for Bushehr.”

In other news relating to Iran's nuclear program, two of their nuclear scientists were gunned down in the streets by gunmen on motorcycles. Plenty of rabble-rousers have suggested the lack of a conventional military strikes means that Iran's nuclear program is not "under attack." Nothing could be farther from the truth...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Wikileaks utilizes transparency of online dating...

Super-emo self-photo. How myspace of him.

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange appeared before a judge today and was granted bail while awaiting extradition to Sweden for sexual crimes. With Assange in the news, everyone over here at Andrewbruss.com thought we’d look into the past of this alleged sex criminal by taking a look at his online dating profile.

On the free dating site OK Cupid HarryHarrison,” aka, Assange says he is a 36 year-old male from Melbourne, Australia who is interested in dating women up to 12 years his junior.

He opens his profile with his trademark arrogance: “WARNING: Want a regular, down to earth guy? Keep moving. I am not the droid you're looking for… I like women from countries that have sustained political turmoil. Western culture seems to forge women that are valueless and inane.”

Although Assange is on trial for committing sexual crimes against more than one woman, he says he is “pretty intellectually and physically pugnacious [and is] very protective of women and children.”

When asked to list six things he could not do without, he cites the company of women. Given his pretty-boy looks, something tells me that a loss of female company may be in his future. If he is behind bars with violent men who also miss a women’s touch, a lack of female companionship may be the least of his problems.

I’ll keep you posted on this Wikirapists comings and goings with regards to extradition, but in the meantime, don’t bother messaging “HarryHarrison.” Assange doesn’t have Internet access in prison...

*Thanks to Jack Wolfe for the tip*

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is behind bars in the U.K. for committing sex crimes in Sweden. While some outlets are reporting he is being charged with rape and sexual assault, others are saying the charges pertain to a broken condom and a refusal to submit to STD tests.

While the easy assumption to jump to is that the long, vengeful hand of the United States has orchestrated all this, the charges were filed by two female victims before this recent dump of diplomatic cables.

Some legal analysts are saying that the charges will be hard to prove, and if he is innocent, Assange deserves to walk. However, if he is guilty, I’m comfortable assuming his diplomatic mischief will result in the book being thrown at him.

The U.K. is likely to extradite him to Sweden, who in turn has an extradition agreement with the United States. The big question is if Assange is not found guilty of rape, would he still be extradited to the U.S. for violating the Espionage Act?

If the U.S. asks the Swedes for him, his guilt in this case doesn’t seem to matter. Turns out jeopardizing the pissing off the State Department to earn yourself international stardom can get you into a lot of trouble. Don’t drop the soap Julian...

Friday, December 3, 2010

Lebanon Gave Advice On Defeating Hezbullah

Hezbullah's anti-tank corps.

And Wikileaks is to thank for yet another declassification of sensitive, endangering information. This time, the leaks pertain to information passed on to the US by the Lebanese Defense Minister on how Israel could defeat Hezbullah in the next round of fighting.

Defense Minister Elias Murr told officials that Israel should avoid bombing Christian infrastructure to avoid losing their public support. The Minister reportedly said, “If Israel has to bomb all of these [infrastructure targets] in the Shiite areas as a matter of operational concern, that is Hezbullah’s problem.”

The cables also said that the Lebanese army would not get involved in the next war and that their hope was to survive for three weeks “completely intact” so they can “take over once Hezbullah’s military has been destroyed.”

For his part, Minister Murr’s office has denied that he made the comments.

Given the historically violent relationship between Shia and Christian demographics in Lebanon, these comments are sure to inflame the already high tensions between Hezbullah and the government coalition backed by the son of slain former-Prime Minister Rafic Hariri.

The investigation into Hariri’s death is likely to incriminate members of Hezbullah and the group has made clear they will not tolerate the indictment of their members.

Analysts have speculated that Hezbullah would respond to charges by either attacking Israel, or overthrowing/boycotting the Lebanese government. The declassification of these cables is can be counted on to make a bad situation worse.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Pakistan shares intel with Israel

Although Pakistan does not recognize the existence of the Jewish State, they are willing to share intelligence with it. According to cables uncovered in the most recent Wikileaks document dump, the head of Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence Agency forwarded information on a pending terrorist attack in India to Israel. The attack was intended to attack Israeli targets in India.

[Side note: The ISI is the same Pakistani intelligence agency credited with creating the Taliban and giving continued support to the forces killing American soldiers in Afghanistan]

Pakistan’s warning is surely a sign of good will, but given the country’s high population of Islamist extremists, this disclosure will likely be unwelcomed news in Pakistan. The same cache of leaked documents suggests that Western intelligence agencies are worried about Pakistan’s nuclear program due to the instability of Pakistan’s government (and the chance of an Islamic coup d'etat).

No doubt, this latest leak will be a dangerous embarrassment to Pakistan. The greatest danger for Israel is that this embarrassment will shy the Pakistani’s away from sharing life-saving intel in the future.

It’s for this reason and many, many more, that Wikileaks Founder/Spokesman Julian Assange has been awarded the Andrewbruss.com 2010 Douchbag Of The Year Award.   

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Capuano at odds with CNC on Sully Sq. project

The Boston Transportation Department has spent the past 18 months working with the community of Charlestown on a plan to redesign Sullivan Sq. to be more pedestrian friendly. After they completed their preliminary design, Representative Mike Capuano voiced his objections.

The BTD refused to speak with me about the story but once I told them I had a quote from Capuano that was at odds with their position, they were happy to provide a response. Funny the way things work out. Read all about it here...

Monday, November 29, 2010

Wikileaks Causing More Harm Than Good

Douchbag Of The Year
As the Andrew Bruss of Andrewbruss.com, I would like to publically disapprove of Wikileaks with extreme prejudice. While founder Julian Assange is right that American’s have the right to know what their government is up to, American’s do not have the right to know what top secret actions our government is taking. That's why they call them secret.

The Freedom Of Information Act provides Americans with unheard of access to government records, fiscal expenditures, and meeting minutes. But when the subject pertains to national security, the Supreme Court has ruled time and time again that American civilians are not entitled to classified information. Whether we’re talking about battlefield records or diplomatic communiqué’s, some things must remain secret from the American public in order to serve them best. You can disagree with this statement, but that doesn’t chance the statements legality.

But what to make of the content? While a great deal of the information that’s surfaced through the latest round of leaks is embarrassing, not much is surprising.

-       Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah has been lobbying two presidents to strike Iran’s nuclear program.
-       Yemen’s President has been telling the Parliament that U.S. bombings against Al Quada forces were in fact Yemeni bombings.
-       Secretary Of State Hillary Clinton has continued a decades old program of utilizing U.S. embassies as de facto CIA bases.
-       Russian intelligence agencies have been relying on organized crime syndicates for operational assistance.
-       Iran smuggled weapons into Lebanon with the assistance of the Red Crescent
-       Russian officials consider Soviet-born Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman “one of them.        

Nothing declassified in the latest round of Wikileaks is too surprising. It’s what happens next that is of grave concern. World leaders from every international hot spot have had private, even embarrassing conversations with U.S. diplomats leaked. German Chancellor Angela Merkel was called “risk-adverse and uncreative,” and the gatekeepers of Mecca and Medina have been ousted as wanting to bomb Iran even more than the Israeli “Zionist regime” they hate so much.

The end result of these leaks will be an unprecedented distrust of U.S. diplomats. In a time where the first African-American president is working to use his overseas popularity to achieve a laundry list of progressive diplomatic initiatives, no good can come of these leaks. The only person who stands to benefit is Assange himself, and something tells me his days of flaunting the worlds only superpower are numbered.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Update: Bone not blondes but still top story

Now CNN.com is reporting that the bone is not Natalee Holloway's but the story is still holding the top slot while several articles pertaining to the conflict between the Korea's hovers beneath it.

At what point does the possible outbreak of a third world war take precedent over human remains that don't belong to a missing American girl?

Talk about needing to get your priorities straight...

Slain Blonde Bumps North Korean Agression From Headlines

The most serious armed conflict between North and South Korea since 1953 is underway, but CNN.com demoted this story in lue of news about Natalee Holloway. The 18 year-old Alabama native went missing in Aruba in 2005 and for the past five years everything about the beautiful blonde's whereabouts has been deemed front page news.

With all due respect to the pain and suffering experienced by the Holloway family, CNN's editorial department needs to check their fucking heads. Two South Korean sailors died in an artillery barrage fired by their whacked-out neighbors to the North, and the prospect of war appears closer than ever. Nearly 30,000 US soldiers are stationed in South Korea along the 38th Parallel and they would instantly be thrust into a full-scale conflict between nuclear powers that would likely cost thousands of lives. But CNN has given greater significance to the discovery of a piece of jawbone that might be Holloway's.

It's the job of the media to report on news of interest to their consumers, but more importantly, news of significance. As emotionally engulfed as people have have been over a sudden loss "that could happen to anyone," giving this story priority over news from the Korean Peninsula is a disservice to CNN.com readers. The skirmish between the Korea's on the island of Yeonpyeong is being called "one of the worst clashes since the end of the Korean War" by BBC analysts. Upon the heels of heightened tensions over the North's nuclear program, the events of the last day deserve the full attention of the 24 hour network obsessing over the Holloway story.

For shame.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Teen's are causing a ruckus!

I attended a public safety meeting at the police station in Charlestown on behalf of Patch.com to hear how crime statistics were trending, but what I heard had nothing to do with car theft or assault.

Charlestown residents all brought up how disrespectful and difficult the local teenagers were. One resident commented that the high school should be torn down and replaced with an army recruitment station. Other residents discouraged him from providing journalists with outlandish remarks, but everyone was on the same page in regards to the littering, roughhousing, and the blatant disrespect exhibited by high school students.

Boston Police Capt. Bernard O'Rourke told residents he would add foot patrols to specific areas but that kids will return to locations they had been forced to disperse from. Turns out kids will be kids.

All this talk about disrespectful, unruly youth makes me feel sort of bad about my own days as a teen. *sigh*

Monday, November 15, 2010

Bill Clinton cameo's in The Hangover 2

Slick Willy was the first politician to bring MTV into the electoral process in 1992, so it makes perfect sense that the sax-playing globe-trotter would be cast to join the ranks of Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis in the sequel to 2009's Golden Globe winner, The Hangover.

Mike Tyson made his tattooed face seen in the first film, and rumor is that Mel Gibson's cameo in the sequel has been replaced by ex-Jedi Liam Neson.

As the Andrew Bruss of andrewbruss.com, I speak for all of us over here when I say we cannot wait for this film to hit theaters.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Kanye apologizes on Today Show... then boycotts Today Show.

We all remember when Kanye West took to national television to tell the world that "George Bush doesn't care about black people." It was September 2nd, 2005, days into the federal governments failed response to Hurricain Katrina. A Concert For Hurricane Relief was held to raise money, and West decided to go off script so everyone knew how he really felt.

Well, it's been over 5 years, and the former president just dropped a book where he comments that being called a racist by Kanye was the worst moment of his presidency. Editors Note: This is the man who was told on 9/11 that "America is under attack." 

But it looks like W. can let the wounds from the past begin to heal. During a recent interview on The Today Show, West told hair-plug enthusiast Matt Lauer that he regrets the comment. ""I would tell George Bush in my moment of frustration, I didn't have the grounds to call him racist," the voice of our generation said.

Although West was down to let the world know he's capable of remorse, he went on to throw a hissy fit over The Today Show's use of video footage showing him upstaging Taylor Swift at the VMA's [The footage related to criticisms Kanye himself was racist against white people].

Kanye is claiming he was ambushed and is refusing to follow through with his scheduled Today Show performances. But at least George W. Bush can sleep tight...

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Sarah Palin's Fact Check Fail

Turns out fact checking is another skill Sarah Palin didn't pick up in journalism school. The reality TV star recently criticized the Federal Reserve for taking actions she insists have caused inflation in the cost of foodstuffs. The former Governor of Alaska specifically said, "Prices have risen significantly over the past year or so."

Following her speech, Sudeep Reddy of The Wall Street Journal ran the numbers and said, "Grocery prices haven’t risen all that significantly, in fact. The consumer price index’s measure of food and beverages for the first nine months of this year showed average annual inflation of less than 0.6%, the slowest pace on record."

Palin took to her Facebook account to strike back at the Journal Reporter [whose News Corp. checks are signed by the same folks that pay Palin's Fox News contract]. Palin asserted that a WSJ story from November 4th reads: "an inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America’s supermarkets and restaurants…Prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months."

Unfortunately for Palin, the Columbia Journalism Review reports the article she cited made a very different point than the one she presented. The full quote from the WSJ articles actually reads: "An inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America’s supermarkets and restaurants, threatening to end the tamest year of food pricing in nearly two decades." Clearly the article she quoted to support claims of inflation suggest food costs remain steady.

Although the cost of food does not appear to be inflating, it appears as though the value of fabricated facts are on the rise.

Friday, November 5, 2010

US Jews urged to lobby Israeli Knessett

I interviewed the Senior Legal Advisor to the Knessett and he said he's surprised that American Jews don't do more lobbying on issues that effect them, like the laws pertaining to conversion. The advisor commented that he was aware American Jew's had been lobbying the Prime Minister, but not the Jewish State's parlament.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Republican Wave That Wasn't

The national media is abuzz over the “Republican wave” that swept Nancy Pelosi and her colleagues out of power in the House of Representatives, but when compared to the expectations the GOP has built over the past year, this was really a wave that wasn’t.

While acknowledging their historical gains in the House, their failure to retake the Senate can almost entirely be attributed to the Tea Party phenomenon that has created a Civil War within the Republican Party.

The Democrats have clung to power in the Senate by a single seat, a seat that likely would have gone to the GOP in Delaware had moderate Republican Representative Mike Castle not lost to “not-witch” Christine O’Donnell in the primary. Polling suggested that Castle would have defeated Democrat Chris Coons, who later went on to beat O’Donnell by 16 points. As soon as she was nominated, Tea Party candidate Christine O’Donnell was attacked by conservative icon’s like Karl Rove as unelectable, and lampooned on cable television for past comments that she’d “dabbled in witch craft.”

Things were far from a loss for Tea Party candidates. Rand Paul brought the GOP a senate seat in Kentucky and Marco Rubio did the same in a three-way race in Florida. To be clear, last night was a victory for the Republican Party. It’s the long-term consequences for the path to victory that conservative pundits should find troubling.

A troublesome trend in GOP primaries this past season was the way moderate Republicans were forced to the right by Tea Party opposition, only to be left supporting positions that alienate moderates and independents. Sarah Palin has hinted that she will run for president "if nobody else is there to do it," and this already has seasoned Republican operatives fearful that a Palin run would force moderate Republicans out of the race and hand Barack Hussein Obama his second term.

While the loss of the House certainly puts a damper on the president’s plans, the Democrats can see an upside in having a GOP majority in the House of Representatives. The past two years of Republican politics have been trademarked by obstructionist opposition to Obama’s agenda, and as a party voted out of power, there was little that forced them to provide an alternative or demonstrate their ability to govern better. This is no longer true.

With seats in both congressional chambers up for grabs in just two years, the GOP will have to demonstrate that they can create jobs and cut down on the federal deficit while limiting spending. 2008 was the year of the Democrat and it only took two years for the American public to change their minds about whom they want in control. Given the recent short sightedness of the American electorate, the GOP should not count on their swing-state gains being dependable in 2012. The theme of this election cycle was anti-incumbency, and if current outrage over the economy remains strong in 2012, that anger will be directed against leadership across the board.

The Republican Party won a historic victory last night that they should be proud of. Now it’s time for them to get to work. If they can’t come through on their promises, their victory will likely prove short lived.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Live election coverage from Charlestown, Mass

I'll be covering the election all day live from Charlestown, Mass so stay tuned as I bring you the inside scoop on how things play out.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Bush administration mastermind slams Palin

Photo courtesy of MSNBC
Karl Rove told The Daily Telegraph that Sarah Palin's upcoming reality show on the Discovery Channel hurts her chances at the presidency. The King-Maker/Senior Advisor to George W. Bush  commented, "I am not certain how that fits in the American calculus of 'that helps me see you in the Oval Office."

Palin is quoted on the show saying, "I would rather be doing this than in some stuffy old political office," between cuts of her dog-sledding and kayaking. Rove said that lines like this will come back to haunt her. "There are high standards that the American people have for [the presidency] and they require a certain level of gravitas," Rove said. "They want to look at the candidate and say 'that candidate is doing things that gives me confidence that they are up to the most demanding job in the world."

Rove has been active in the midterm elections, campaigning for Republican candidates through the work of American Crossroads, a tax-exempt organization that avoids scrutiny from the Federal Election Commission. Not-Witch Christine O'Donnell's victory over Republican Rep. Mike Castle is likely to have secured the former seat of Vice President Joe Biden to the Democratic Party. On the heels of O'Donnell's victory, Rove questioned her chances of winning. 

Palin shot back, "Bless his heart. We love our friends, they're in the machine, the expert politicos. But my message to those who say that the GOP nominee is not electable, or that they're not even going to try, well I say, 'buck up!'"

Both Rove and Palin are commentators on Fox News Channel.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Iran training Taliban to use surface-to-air missiles

The Washington Examiner is reporting that Iranian military advisors are training Taliban fighters to use surface-to-air missiles against U.S. and its NATO allies in Afghanistan. U.S.-supplied surface-to-air missiles brought the Soviet Union to its knees in Afghanistan, and an introduction of SAM technology onto the battlefield would be a game changer.

Due to Afghanistans rough terrain, coalition forces are dependent on aircrafts to transport troops and supplies. If our primary means of transportation in Afghanistan is compromised, the effect could revolutionize the battlefield in a way very similar to the use of IED's throughout Iraq.

Although the Iranians are training the Taliban to use SAM's, it is unknown if the Taliban has the weapons systems themselves.

Monday, October 25, 2010

ADL addresses bullying

At the Anti-Defamation League's national conference, a round-table discussion was held on issues relating to bullying and the Massachusetts state law that has given educators more tools to combat the problem. Read my coverage in the Jewish Advocate here...

Friday, October 22, 2010

Interfaith organization puts gubernatorial hopefuls to the test

Last weekend I covered a forum organized by the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization that got all four candidates for the Bay State's highest office to answer "yes" or "no" regarding their support of the 3 ballot questions, as well as issues ranging from settling Haitian refugees, credit card usury, and funding youth programs. You can read my coverage of the event in The Jewish Advocate here...

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

U.S. to sell Saudi's $60b in weaponry

The Department of Defense has brought a deal before Congress to sell Saudi Arabia up to $60b in military hardware, including 85 F-15's, UH-60 Black Hawk's, and Apache attack helicopters. In addition to giving them more "birds in the air," the deal is expected to include advanced radar technology.

It's no secret that Iranian regional hegemony is a an equal, if not greater threat to Saudi Arabia than it is to the United States. Sunni Arab allies of the United States such as Egypt, Jordan, and the Saudi's are equally disturbed by the Shia Persian power's nuclear program, and this deal would boost the strength of its regional allies by providing a deterrent against an attack from any Ayatollahs who shall remain nameless.

Monday, October 18, 2010

LCD Soundsystem photo gallery

LCD Soundsystem came through Boston on what is rumored to be their last tour in support of their rumored-last album, and I was there on behalf of Glide Magazine to get a few photos. Enjoy!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Brandeis' President-elect discuses campus hate speech

I've had an article published on the address Frederick Lawrence, Brandies' President-elect gave to the ADL National Committee on hate speech on college campuses.

The former B.U. Law Professor and Dean of G.W. Law gave a very reasoned argument about why provocative, and often times offensive expression is encouraged on campuses. However, he noted that the line is drawn when people are meant to feel threatened or delegitimized

When asked how he would handle the recent suicide at Rutgers University, he noted that college president's are only "one phone call away" from being in their peers shoes, and for that very reason, he wouldn't critique that schools handling of the situation.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Foxman defends ADL's position on Lower Manhattan Mosque

Last week I reported on the Anti-Defamation League's National Conference at Boston's Sheraton Hotel for The Jewish Advocate. During the event, ADL National Director Abe Foxman was confronted by members in attendance who requested that the organization change it's position on the Lower Manhattan Mosque. Foxman, who feels as though their position has been misrepresented by the media, wrote an article in The Huffington Post to explain their position.

As for the question from his organization's member, Foxman replied: “I respectfully say to you, read what we said, not what others said we said.”

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Marine Corps considering new class of Cyber-Warriors

Ever since the Department of Defense created its Cyber-Defense program in 2009, the US has been gradually catching up with the army of hackers countries like China have up their sleeve. The recent use of the Stuxnet virus against the Iranian nuclear program has demonstrated to the world how powerful cyber-warfare can be, and earlier today, Lt. Gen. George Flynn, deputy commandant for combat development and integration, told a House Armed Services Committee panel that a new breed of "Cyber-Warriors" is in our future.

The teams that pilot UAV's from Nellis Air Force Base could be considered Cyber-Pilots, so the announcement of Cyber-Warriors should be of no surprise. Flynn was tight lipped about the role these Tron-esque soldiers would play in future conflicts, but he did say that given the extensive training they would undergo, these recruits would be expected to serve for lengthy periods of time. 

Friday, October 8, 2010

Tom Donilon: Right guy for the job?

Deputy National Security Advisor Tom Donilon is slated to replace his boss, General James Jones, when he steps down as President Obama's right hand man on all things threatening. Donilon has plenty of credentials to support his hiring, but according to Bob Woodward's "Obama's Wars," there are plenty of reasons this news will not be welcomed by defense insiders.

Jones was quoted telling Donilon, "You have no credibility with the military. The book also quotes Secretary of Defense Rober Gates as saying Donilon would be a "disaster" as a Jones' replacement. During an Afghanistan strategy pow-wow, Jones was said to be displeased with his deputy's conduct and asked to speak with him after the meeting. Jones' concern was that Donilon made far-reaching comments about Iraq and Afghanistan without having visited either country. He advised his deputy to see these places for themselves, telling him, "The White House, Situation Room, interagency byplay, as important as they are, are not everything."

Although there is cause for concern, his lack of street-cred does not necessarily rule him out as a competent advisor. After all, Condoleezza Rice, George W. Bush's first National Security Advisor/second Secretary of State, had little practical experience in defense issues. At Stanford University she was an assistant professor who specialized in Soviet Russia, which no longer existed when she served in the White House. That worked out in the end... didn't it?