Larwyn’s Linx: The White House Court Jesters of Sequester

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Nation

The White House Court Jesters of Sequester: Malkin
Mark Levin: These are very, very dark times for this country: Scoop
SkyFall: Now Playing Everywhere Across America: Dewey

Chuck Hagel — a litmus test for Republican weakness and stupidity: Bookworm
Farrakhan: Hagel and I are brothers from another mother: WS
Betrayal: Names of Republican Traitors on Hagel Vote: Atlas

Kentucky Senate Passes Gun Nullification Legislation: Cove
Muslims recruiting black youth in poorest DC neighborhoods: Creeping
Man Charged for Following Shotgun Joe Biden’s Advice: WAVY

Economy

Illinois Can’t Even Afford to Pay Lottery Winners: RWN
Sen. Ron Johnson: If Boehner Caves on Taxes, He’s Lose Speakership: Reaganite
DeMint: Obama Tax Hikes Will Do More Harm Than Sequester: Foundry

Abolish the Department of Education: AmSpec
Another Democrat success story: half of Detroit properties haven’t paid taxes: Mish
Coin Toss May Decide New Appeals of NLRB Decisions: Forbes

Scandal Central

Obama Releases ‘Waves’ of Illegal Aliens From Holding Centers: JWF
Grassley: Homeland Security may be monopolizing ammo market: SecInfoWatch
Fake Twitter Accounts? Obama’s Political Group Pushes Gun Control: Foundry

Media

How Obama Wins: Shapiro
Scare-questor – the 2 Percent Solution: BYOB: MOTUS
Morris:

The Evolution of Liberal Dance: Ace
Trainwreck: Keith Ellison wages verbal Jihad against Sean Hannity on his show: Scoop
The Curious Case of Keith “Crybaby” Ellison, CAIR and the Nation of Islam’s Man in Congress: NewsReal

World

Bangladesh’s Secular Democracy Struggles with Violent Radical Islam: Cutting Edge
Obama’s Release of Thousands of Illegal Immigrants- Shades of Castro’s Mariel Boatlift: Shark Tank
On The Joke That Is The “Efficient” Italian Market: ZH

Sci-Tech (courtesy BadBlue.com/Tech)

Chinese hackers: Professional cyberspies?: ArmyTimes
Ditch your laptop for under $ 100 with Dell Project Ophelia: CNet
Olive Oil Diet Curbs Strokes: WSJ

Cornucopia

Missed Connections: American Digest
Celebrity Guess-Off: C&S
My Rape Whistle is a Glock: AWD

Image: BarkingCrayon

QOTD: “List of Shame: Republicans Who Voted to Confirm Plainly-Unqualified Man to Lead the Defense Department… Remember them, and call them out as liars when they claimed they voted “against” Hagel. They did not.

Alexander
Ayotte
Blunt
Burr
Chambliss
Coburn
Collins
Corker
Flake
Graham
Hatch
McCain
Murkowski
Sessions
Thune

Now that’s the list of people who voted “Yes” on cloture (guaranteeing Hagel’s confirmation) but then cast a covering, false vote on the nomination itself (a meaningless gesture made for political purposes).

Interestingly, some people voted the other way around — voting “No” on cloture but then “Yes” on the nomination itself.

Among them? Rand Paul, who’s attempting to both be a Mainstream Conservative and also play to his father’s supporters with their, um… views on Israel.” –Ace

Doug Ross @ Journal

Just one week until #DamascusCountdown releases. Here’s a sneak preview.

damascuscountdown

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just one week from today — Tuesday, March 5th — Damascus Countdown releases. This international political thriller is the last novel in a trilogy that includes The Twelfth Imam and The Tehran Initiative.

The series focuses on David Shirazi, an Iranian-born operative for the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. Shirazi has been sent undercover to Tehran to identify and sabotage the Ayatollah’s top secret nuclear weapons program, a program that is being developed in coordination with North Korea. Meanwhile, even as an American President realizes he has waited too long to stop Iran, he pressures Israeli leaders not to take action of their own. But all Hell breaks loose when the Israeli Prime Minister does, in fact, order a massive preemptive strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities. Then comes the blowback as Iran and her enemies — Hezbollah, Hamas but especially Syria — join the holy war to annihilate Israel and usher in the End of Days and the caliphate of the Islamic messiah.

You can pre-order it now in hardcover, audio book, and e-book formats (to be read on the Kindle, Nook, iPad, etc, as well as on your mobile phone).

In the meantime, here are excerpts from Chapter One.

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CHAPTER ONE — QOM, IRAN

David knew one of Iran’s largest nuclear facilities—the uranium enrichment plant at Fordow—was just a few miles away over the ridge, and sure enough, a split second later, he heard the deafening roar of explosions, one after another in rapid succession. He turned and saw enormous balls of fire and plumes of smoke rising into the sky and the four Israeli jets disappearing into the clouds.

But then another strike package came swooping down behind them. Four more Israeli fighters—emblazoned with the blue Star of David on their wings—descended like lightning. He assumed their mission, too, was to attack the facility down the road. But David watched in horror as one of the jets first fired an air-to-ground missile at the heart of the mosque behind him. They were sending a message to the Twelfth Imam and to all his followers. But they were about to destroy David’s plan.

His instinct was to get up and run for cover, but it was too late, and he had to do everything possible to protect Javad Nouri. That was his mission. Under no circumstances could he allow Nouri to die. He absolutely had to deliver the aide back to the Mahdi wounded but alive and indebted to David. It was, he believed, the only chance to gain the Mahdi’s trust and the only shred of a chance he had to be invited into the inner circle. Then again, did any of that matter now? The war he had been sent to prevent was under way. The carnage on both sides was going to be incalculable. The entire region was about to go up in flames. What was left for him to do?

Suddenly the ground convulsed as a series of explosions ripped through the complex. The minarets began to totter. People were screaming again, running in all directions as the first tower came crashing down and the second followed. David covered his head and made sure Nouri was covered too. Then, as the smoke began to clear, he turned and surveyed the carnage. Bodies were sprawled everywhere. Some were dead. Others were severely wounded. David turned Nouri over. He was covered in blood. His eyes were dilated, but he was breathing. He was still alive.

Guns drawn, three injured bodyguards soon rushed to David’s side. With his help, they carefully picked up Nouri and carried him to the white SUV, severely damaged by the car bombing nearby but still intact and still running. Together, they laid Nouri down on the backseat. One security man climbed in the back with him. Another climbed into one of the middle seats. The third shut and locked the side door, then got in the front passenger seat.

“Wait, wait; you forgot these,” David yelled just before the guard closed the door. He grabbed the box of satellite phones and gave them to the guard. “The Mahdi wanted these. They don’t all work. But some of them do.”

Then he pulled out a pen and quickly wrote his mobile number on the box. “Have the Mahdi’s people call me and tell me how Javad is. And tell me if there’s anything I can do for the Mahdi himself.”

The guard thanked David and shook his hand vigorously. Then he shut the door, and what was left of the motorcade raced off.

David stood there alone as the ground shook again. More Israeli jets were swooping down from the heavens. They were firing more missiles and dropping more bombs on targets just over the mountains. For a moment, David couldn’t move. He stared at the billows of smoke rising from the air strikes over the horizon and tried to calculate his next move.

He looked to the street, searching for the taxi he’d asked to wait. It was nowhere to be seen, but he could hardly blame the driver. People were panicked from the gunfire, the car bombing, and the air strikes. They were fleeing as rapidly as they could in every direction. David knew he had to get away as well. He couldn’t afford to be caught by the police and dragged in for questioning. He had a mission. He had a plan. He had a team that was counting on him. He knew he had to stay focused, yet he grieved for those wounded around him. So he turned and rushed to the side of one severely wounded guard who was slipping into unconsciousness. Hearing sirens approaching from every direction, David took off his jacket and used it to put pressure on the man’s bleeding leg. As he did, he silently prayed over the man, asking the Lord to comfort and heal him.

Ambulances began arriving on the scene. Paramedics were soon rushing to the wounded to triage them and get the most critical cases to the nearest hospitals. Amid the chaos and confusion, David saw his opportunity. He took a pistol off the wounded bodyguard and slipped it into his pocket. Then he moved to another of the downed guards. The man seemed to be staring up at the sky. His mouth was open. But when David checked for a pulse, he found none. David closed the man’s eyes, then quickly lifted a spare magazine and took the guard’s two-way radio.

Firefighters were now arriving to battle multiple blazes. More police officers were pulling up as well. They began to secure the crime scene and interview what few witnesses had not fled the scene quickly enough. David tried to use the commotion as cover. He was determined not to be questioned, much less exposed. But then he heard someone shouting behind him. David turned and saw an elderly cleric, blood splattered all over his robes, pointing at him.

“Talk to that man!” the cleric said to a police officer. “He was here when all the shooting started. And I think he just took something off that dead body.”

The policeman looked directly at David and ordered him to stop. David didn’t dare. With a surge of adrenaline, he pivoted hard and began sprinting into the blazing wreckage of the mosque. The officer shouted again for him to halt and began running after him, blowing a whistle and calling other officers to join the pursuit.

Continued…

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Joel C. Rosenberg’s Blog

Iran’s “Plan B” for a nuclear bomb. Nuclear talks fail again. “Some think Israel’s red line for military action is before Arak comes online.”

Crackpot Preppers
Water vapour, circled, is seen being emitted from forced air coolers at the Arak heavy water production plant earlier this month, showing that the facility is operational Photo: DigitalGlobe Inc/McKenzie Intelligence Ltd

Water vapour, circled, is seen being emitted from forced air coolers at the Arak heavy water production plant earlier this month, showing that the facility is operational Photo: DigitalGlobe Inc/McKenzie Intelligence Ltd

“The Telegraph can disclose details of activity at a heavily-guarded Iranian facility from which international inspectors have been barred for 18 months,” reports the London Telegraph. “The images, taken earlier this month, show that Iran has activated the Arak heavy-water production plant. Heavy water is needed to operate a nuclear reactor that can produce plutonium, which could then be used to make a bomb. The images show signs of activity at the Arak plant, including a cloud of steam that indicates heavy-water production.”

“The striking image of steam over the Arak heavy-water complex is a vivid demonstration that the regime has more than one pathway to a potential nuclear weapon,” notes the Telegraph. “Previously, international talks on Iran’s nuclear programme have focused on the Islamic Republic’s attempts to enrich uranium at plants including Fordow. But the new images of Arak highlight the progress Iran has made on facilities that could allow it to produce plutonium, potentially giving the country a second option in developing a nuclear weapon….Iran has told the IAEA that it will begin operating the reactor at Arak in the first three months of 2014. The country still lacks the technology to reprocess plutonium and use it for a weapon. But North Korea has successfully developed that technology, and some analysts speculate that Iran could do the same.”

“Mark Fitzpatrick, a former US State Department official at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, suggested that Arak could be part of a process that might trigger Western strikes on Iran,” reports the Telegraph. “One option for the Iranian regime would be to acquire the necessary reprocessing technology from North Korea, he said. ‘By then, the option of a military strike on an operating reactor would present enormous complications because of the radiation that would be spread,’ he explained. ‘Some think Israel’s red line for military action is before Arak comes online.’”

UPDATE: “I think there’s time, but there’s not much time” for sanctions to work, Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren told USA Today. “There’s a window for diplomacy, but the window is closing….We know that given the centrifuges that they have now, they will pass a red line. That’s the point where we will no longer be able to prevent them from making a nuclear weapon, and that line is coming up in the summer. If they install the next generation of centrifuges — and they’re installing them right now — (and) if those centrifuges begin to spin, then the time will be even shorter.”

Key headlines I’m tracking:

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Joel C. Rosenberg’s Blog