I’m a drone, and I’m here to help him kill you
Because all the big money’s in defense contracts, even Zipline with its lifesaving drone delivery technology is getting into the nationalized murder business.
Drone company Zipline partnered with the DoD and Naval Medical Research Center to deploy its drones during four multinational military forces exercises in Australia between July 30 and Sept. 5. Zipline made more than 400 deliveries, including mock blood resupplies to shock trauma platoons.
Because the drone debate isn’t just about whether our new robot overlords will kill us all and use our bodies for fuel, it’s about whether lifesaving tech can be used to do evil. Even if that evil is on behalf of an idea like freedom, or apple pie.
The irony is that the money coming into Zipline will mean they’ll be able to deliver a whole lot more medicine in places where people are going to end up shot in the face by the US forces that other Zipline drones are keeping alive by getting blood to the front lines.
No, I don’t have a point.
I don’t have any big ideas.
What I have is a keyboard and a propensity to the absurd.
You’ll always be the chief of bad ideas to us
The good news is that Eddie Gallagher gets to retire with some rank after he thought it would be a good idea to take pics with a dead Syrian fighter. Just not as much as rank as he’d have liked.
The long saga of accused SEAL war criminal Special Warfare Operator Chief Edward “Eddie” Gallagher might’ve come to an end on Tuesday, with a ruling that will let him retire as a petty officer first class, convicted only of posing for a photo with a dead detainee.
Gallagher and his lawyer think he should have been allowed to retire as a chief petty officer. His new rank means he’ll only get $1.5 million in pension, vs. the $1.7 million he would have earned otherwise.
The whole story sucks, and pretty sure Gallagher pissed off a lot of people on his way up, given that he was the only one put on trial for the dead Syrian fighter shenanigans.
Lancers Bone their way to Saudi and back
Really trying to make this rapid deployment of B-1 bombers to KSA into a dick joke because these are the internets and I am a child.
Multiple B-1B Lancers took off Thursday from Ellsworth Air Force Base near Rapid City and flew to Saudi Arabia, according to the Air Force.
The B-1s have since returned home. The deployment was intended to demonstrate an ability to deploy rapidly anywhere and anytime in the world, and to demonstrate lethal strike options for military commanders, according to a news release.
They're pitching this as a capabilities exercise, and maybe a plea for relevance. And another push at a strategic level to disperse assets in support of CENTCOM that aren't actually sitting in CENTCOM's AOR. Because that’s how the next war will be fought, from a great distance.
All of which should worry the shit out Qatar which spent a fuck ton of money trying to make Al Udeid a place where the Americans would keep prosecuting the forever war in the Middle East.
Sounds like we need a moat, not a wall
Remember when we were all worried about that crisis at our southern border and we were worried about all the kids and the camps and whatnot? Turns out it’s still a problem, even though Trump’s moved from his racist dog whistling to actual dog whistling trying to get us all to forget about Ukraine.
A top U.S. Border Patrol official has a warning: The crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border is not over.
Even though crossings have been down over the past few months and news of custody deaths and teeming facilities full of children and families has faded from front pages and talking points of politicians, the number of migrants coming over border is still high. And resources are still stretched.
"It is kind of a new norm. We're at risk at any time," if some recent deterrent efforts are blocked by the courts, like a policy forcing asylum seekers to wait out their claims in Mexico , Brian Hastings, chief of law enforcement operations at Border Patrol said in an interview with The Associated Press.
Here’s some fun numbers:
In FY 2019, 859,150 apprehensions by Border Patrol - previous high was 2014, with 479,371 apprehensions by CBP
110,000 legal attempts that CBP found to be otherwise
140,000 border crossers evaded the Border Patrol
4,900 rescued by CBP, including 742 river rescues, up from 86 the previous year
More than 200 groups of 100 or more migrants dropped by smugglers
That last one is important, because that many migrants at once means that the CBP station has to shut down for the entire day just to process that many possible migrants.
The biggest problem, is that many of the border crossers are families from Central Mexico, vs. the single Mexican men of the past. Which means that the CBP has to work even harder, and border facilities aren’t equipped to handle it.
It’s less a security issue than a humanitarian one, and one of the Americans’ own making, as many of those families are fleeing regimes put in place or at least supported by the United States.
Finally an immigrant who should terrify Trump
It’s possible you haven’t heard of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman. Most of us hadn’t before this week, but now know him because he’s testifying about what really happened with that Ukraine call.
“I sit here, as a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army, an immigrant,” he plans to tell investigators, adding, “I have a deep appreciation for American values and ideals and the power of freedom. I am a patriot, and it is my sacred duty and honor to advance and defend our country, irrespective of party or politics.”
It’s possible you haven’t heard of Sean Duffy either before, but he’s got some thoughts on Vindman, as any good reality star and former professional lumberjack would.
That last part’s not a joke, it’s how Duffy paid for law school.
Check the video out, where Duffy refers to a man whose family brought him to the US when he was 3 years old as a “former Ukrainian.”
New CNN analyst and former MTV Real World star Sean Duffy, a former Republican congressman from Wisconsin who has already drawn criticism during his brief tenure with the network, used almost identical language to describe Vindman during a spot on CNN's New Day Tuesday morning.