“If we concentrated on the really important stuff in life,
there’d be a shortage of fishing poles!”
By Junius P. Long
Food For Thought
If you can get arrested for hunting or fishing without a license, but not for being in the country illegally …you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If you have to get your parents’ permission to go on a field trip or take an aspirin in school, but not to get an abortion … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If the only school curriculum allowed to explain how we got here is evolution, but the government stops a $15 million construction project to keep a rare spider from evolving to extinction … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If you have to show identification to board an airplane, cash a check, buy liquor or check out a library book, but not to vote who runs the government … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If the government wants to ban stable, law-abiding citizens from owning gun magazines with more than ten rounds, but gives 20 F-16 fighter jets to the crazy new leaders in Egypt … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If, in the largest city, you can buy two 16-ounce sodas, but not a 24-ounce soda because 24-ounces of a sugary drink might make you fat … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If an 80-year-old woman can be stripped searched by the TSA but a woman in a hijab is only subject to having her neck and head searched … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If your government believes that the best way to eradicate trillions of dollars of debt is to spend trillions more … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If a seven year old boy can be thrown out of school for saying his teacher’s “cute,” but hosting a sexual exploration or diversity class in grade school is perfectly acceptable … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If children are forcibly removed from parents who discipline them with spankings while children of addicts are left in filth and drug infested “homes”… you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If hard work and success are met with higher taxes and more government intrusion, while not working is rewarded with EBT cards, WIC checks, Medicaid, subsidized housing and free cell phones … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If the government’s plan for getting people back to work is to incentivize NOT working with 99 weeks of unemployment checks and no requirement to prove they applied but can’t find work … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If being stripped of the ability to defend yourself makes you more “safe” according to the government … you might live in a country founded by geniuses but run by idiots.
If you are offended by this article, I’ll bet you voted for the idiots who are running, and ruining our great country.
Think long and hard about this! The video is ONLY FIFTY SECONDS.
ALL of us HAVE THE TIME to watch !!!!
If you want to know how the Special Forces and the military feel about Benghazi and Obama, take a look at this 50-second video !!
Short and to-the-point.
Here’s a quiz for you.
–Maybe Hillary is a Socialist
The Day of the Shoot-Down The BTTR flight of Feb. 24, 1996 began like most of their others, as a planned search-and-rescue operation in international airspace following all established protocols. On Feb. 23, the day before, double-agent Roque suddenly and suspiciously returned to Cuba. Although the state department was aware of his departure, it was never communicated to BTTR. Also, that same evening, U.S. radar and monitors had been placed on alert to follow the scheduled BTTR flights the next day. Local military had also been alerted to coordinate flight plans and departure times with the watch supervisor and to trace BTTR transponder codes for as long as possible. On Feb. 24, BTTR flight plans filed for a 10:15 a.m. takeoff were transmitted to Miami and Cuba. Circumstances delayed the BTTR flight until the late afternoon, yet a Cuban military commander reported that Cuban MiGs were nonetheless sent out at BTTR’s anticipated arrival time to intercept three unidentified aircraft violating Cuban airspace. The U.S. commander in charge ordered a military aircraft response in accordance with standard operating procedures, and the MiGs returned to Cuba. Inexplicably, however, U.S. reports did not show any unidentified aircraft or Cuban military aircraft activity during that time interval. As he flew his Cessna on that day, Basulto reported detecting aircraft north of the 24th parallel, the line which marks the U.S. airspace boundary. He also crossed paths with a U.S. Navy Orion aircraft, something he had never seen before during any of his missions. Per protocols and well-established procedures followed over the previous five years and 1,800 search-and-rescue missions, Basulto notified Havana of a five-hour stay in the area once he arrived at his airspace destination. Meanwhile, in California, senior detection systems specialist Jeffrey Houlihan, with the U.S. Customs Service Domestic Air Interdiction Coordination Center, saw something amiss as he read and interpreted information from multiple antennae and Aerostat balloons. A seasoned radar and air weapons control expert and former Air Force pilot, Houlihan became alarmed as he observed Cuban interceptors operating without transponders, flying at high speeds, and making rapid maneuvers in and out of radar range. Much to his astonishment soon thereafter, he detected Cuban MiGs far out in international airspace flying directly above BTTR. Armed with the knowledge that an emergency response could be forthcoming from Tyndall Air Force Base in South Florida, he made a frantic call for help. Momentarily satisfied by the information that the Air Force base had been briefed and was handling the situation, Houlihan returned to his watch. As he continued to monitor the situation, he was astonished to see that no American interceptor aircraft showed up in the area to protect BTTR from attack, which would have been in accordance with standard operating procedures. Little did he realize at that time that he was to witness the senseless murder of four dedicated BTTR pilots. Houlihan later recounted that the Air Force Base had been on battle stations alert at the time of his “911″ call. The alert was inexplicably lifted at some point shortly thereafter. The shooting down of BTTR planes without warning began with Cuban MiGs reporting visual contact and confirming planes registrations with Havana. As documented as part of an investigation conducted by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), no warning passes or redirecting or escorting procedures, required by international law for civilian aircraft, were attempted. According to Basulto’s account, later denied by U.S. authorities, after shooting down the two planes of his fellow pilots, the Cuban MiGs chased Basulto for 53 minutes over the 24th parallel within three minutes of U.S. airspace. Upon Basulto’s safe landing back in Florida, U.S. Custom officials’ top priority was to obtain the video and audiotapes made by Basulto of his flight, which they demanded immediately. Later investigations revealed that the Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Air Force and Navy were all on alert and had monitored the events of that fateful day. Reaction For his humanitarian efforts, Basulto incurred accusations by Castro of “being involved in terrorist acts” and “subverting the internal order of the island.” In an interview with television journalist Dan Rather, the Cuban dictator admitted to planning and ordering the shoot-down and misled the American public with false statements that BTTR had committed “serious terrorist actions” and had been warned on several occasions about flying in Cuban airspace. Basulto was punished by the U.S. government, losing his pilot’s license for six months. Plus, he was censured, discredited, and misrepresented as an agitator.
Following the BTTR shoot-down, U.S. policy on balseros underwent a dramatic change. In the year of the shoot-down, Clinton’s Attorney General Janet Reno warned that rafters discovered in the Florida Straits by the U.S. Coast Guard would risk being stopped and prosecuted by the U.S. government. A serious indictment of the Castro regime was that refugees reported preferring their internment at GITMO to the oppressive life in their native land. By 1995, U.S. policy toward the balseros became more restrictive, and the Clinton administration began sending them back to Cuba if they failed to reach dry land. The U.S. resolved to curtail exile demonstrations thought provocative to Castro and sought a reduction of hostile rhetoric between the two countries.
Aftermath In early 1998, the Pentagon released a report concluding that Cuba “does not pose a significant military threat to the U.S. or to other countries in the region.” Yet, later that year, a mere two years after the shoot-down, The Cuban Five, part of La Red Avispa, were arrested in Miami. Their arrests shed light on their activities: the successful infiltration of the U.S. Southern Command (SEADS) and Cuban-American groups. Their subversive activities contributed to the BTTR shoot-down, and the five were viewed as national heroes in Cuba. It is also worth noting that on the day of the BTTR shoot-down, convicted Cuban spy Ana Montes was the senior intelligence expert on the Cuban military at the Pentagon. According to Scott Carmichael, a senior security and counterintelligence investigator for the DIA, military officials looked to Montes, as the designated Cuban expert, for answers on the day of the shoot-down. Thus, she was in a prime position to provide false information and pass military plans onto the Cuban government (True Believer: Inside the Investigation and Capture of Ana Montes, Cuba’s Master Spy, Scott W. Carmichael, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, Maryland, 2007). According to a December 24, 2000 article by Knight Ridder reporter Gail Epstein Nieves, who reported on the spy trials of the five, “[t]he FBI intercepted clandestine communications between Havana and its South Florida intelligence agents that forecast a potentially violent confrontation between Cuba and Brothers to the Rescue more than a week before the planes were shot down[.]” One of the intercepts instructed the two BTTR Cuba spies, Roque and Gonzalez, to refrain from flying on particular days. Former Clinton Cuba advisor Nuccio, although admitting to concerns about a shoot-down by Cuba, said there was no “hard evidence” of an impending attack and claimed ignorance on the intercepts. Yet Nuccio wrote an e-mail on the day before the shoot-down to Clinton’s national security adviser Sandy Berger warning of a possible incident. Today and Conclusions The events that took place around the shoot-down of two BTTR rescue planes on February 24, 1996 amounted to a cover-up of major proportions. Despite significant prior information and forewarning, the Clinton administration’s failure to warn BTTR, a civilian search-and-rescue operation and peaceful advocate of democratic change in Cuba, was an unconscionable travesty resulting in the tragic loss of four lives. Furthermore, the decision not to initiate a defensive military response — the ordering of a military stand-down — smacks of complicity in this egregious incident. This was indeed puzzling in light of previous U.S. government assistance to BTTR. During the Bush Sr. administration, the Coast Guard provided cover from above for a rescue mission in the water and, on another occasion, called on defense forces to rescue BTTR from a potentially dangerous situation. Today, Obama has liberalized travel to Cuba and allowed religious, university, and cultural groups to visit the island. He has lifted restrictions on remittances to the island. In addition, he has failed to challenge efforts by the successors and allies of Castro and Hugo Chávez, enemies of the free world, to expand their sphere of influence in Latin America. Despite mainstream media portrayals that herald Cuba under Raul Castro as leading to economic reform and political liberalization, Cuba ranks next to last, just above North Korea, on the Heritage Foundation’s latest index of economic freedom. This is “exactly where Cuba’s has been since Raul’s ‘reforms’ commenced,” said Cuban-American author Humberto Fontova, who agrees with the ranking. “In fact, Cuba is currently undergoing a wave of terror, a 20-year high in political beatings and arrests. This wave of terror and repression coincides with record tourism to the island,” Fontova says. Benghazi Parallels The lack of action and the outright dissembling of information so prevalent in the BTTR shoot-down appear to have been at play in Benghazi. Although officials at the Pentagon, U.S. State Department, FBI, and other government agencies were almost immediately informed that the jihadist group had perpetrated the attack, the Obama administration initially credited it to a spontaneous eruption of anger against an anti-Muslim film posted on the internet. This charade was maintained for several weeks, with the U.S. government going so far as to place $70,000 worth of apology ads on Pakistani TV and for then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to extend duplicitous words of comfort to the father of a fallen Navy SEAL with “We’ll make sure that the person who made that film is arrested and prosecuted.”
Following the attack, it was revealed that the late Ambassador Stevens repeatedly pleaded for extra security personnel, citing a “troubling increase in violence and Islamist influence,” but was denied additional support by the state department. Tragically, American drones were overhead at the time but did nothing to stop the attack, in deference to the political expediency of Obama’s pre-election portrayal of a successful U.S.-led operation toppling the Libyan dictator and furthering the “Arab Spring.” Later revelations uncovered that Stevens was aiding Syrian rebels, including al-Qaeda operatives, and supplying them with weapons to fight Bashar al-Assad’s regime as part of a U.S.-sponsored operation. Curiously, FBI investigators arrived at the attack site almost a month later and spent only three hours collecting evidence. At this point, 33 survivors have not yet been heard from, and some speculate that they have been silenced by threats. The Benghazi attacks may well come to parallel the BTTR shoot-down. More than 17 years after that incident, the use of misinformation, the unavailability of potential witnesses, and the omission of vital evidence to perpetuate a cover-up of massive wrongdoing still haunt the survivors of this tragic event.