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Scene above:  Constitution Island, where Revolutionary War forts still exist, as photographed from Trophy Point, United States Military Academy, West Point, New York
 

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JUNE 4,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT:

BREAKTHROUGH? – FROM REDSTATE:   A person believed to be among the highest-ranking defectors ever to the United States from the People’s Republic of China has been working with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) for months, sources inside the intelligence community have told RedState on condition of anonymity. The defector has direct knowledge of special weapons programs in China, including bioweapons programs, those sources say.  The information provided to RedState corroborates and clarifies Thursday evening’s reporting by journalist Adam Housley:  "Being told the increased pressure on China in recent days is due to a defector with intimate knowledge. In fact, Wray didn’t know right away because they wanted to make sure they got all they needed before telling him."  RedState’s sources say that’s partially true. FBI Director Christopher Wray was “ambushed” with the information, they say, and CIA was also unaware. Sources say DIA leadership kept the defector within their Clandestine Services network to prevent CIA and the State Department from accessing the person, whose existence was kept from other agencies because DIA leadership believes there are Chinese spies or sources inside the FBI, CIA, and several other federal agencies. Please note that last sentence.  In fact , the infiltration of our government by China is one of the most important stories of our time, but a woke press has little interest in it.  Xenophobia you know.

BUT WE KNEW THIS AS KIDS – FROM STUDYFINDS:  TUCSON, Ariz. — In news that’s sure to start plenty of new conversations between people and “man’s best friend,” a new study finds puppies are born with “human-like” social skills. Simply put, scientists say these adorable canines are able to communicate with people from birth.  Generally, dogs need little-to-no training in order to follow directions thanks to their innate genes which have been developing for centuries. In fact, researchers at the University of Arizona say more than 40 percent of the variation in a puppy’s ability to follow a human’s finger-pointing is due to their inherited genes.  “We found that there’s definitely a strong genetic component, and they’re definitely doing it from the get-go,” says study co-author Evan MacLean in a university release. And remember, no dog ever lied to you.

June 4, 2021       Permalink

 

Recalling this day in 1944, when allied troops liberated Rome.  It was a major event in the storied history the city, but overshadowed two days later by the D-Day landings in northern France.

THIS IS GETTING SERIOUS – OVERNIGHT:  Cyber warfare, that is.  Since it occurs quietly, and possesses no warships, planes, or tanks, cyber warfare doesn't get that much notice.  But it's starting to affect this nation in very dangerous ways.  Potentially, deadly ways.  From The Wall Street Journal:

FBI Director Christopher Wray said the agency was investigating about 100 different types of ransomware, many tracing back to hackers in Russia, and compared the current spate of cyberattacks with the challenge posed by the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

“There are a lot of parallels, there’s a lot of importance, and a lot of focus by us on disruption and prevention,” Mr. Wray said in an interview Thursday. “There’s a shared responsibility, not just across government agencies but across the private sector and even the average American.”

Mr. Wray’s comments—among his first publicly since two recent ransomware attacks gripped the U.S. meat and oil-and-gas industries—come as senior Biden administration officials have characterized ransomware as an urgent national-security threat and said they are looking at ways to disrupt the criminal ecosystem that supports the booming industry. Each of the 100 different malicious software variants are responsible for multiple ransomware attacks in the U.S., Mr. Wray said.

Ransomware is a type of malicious computer code that locks up a victim network’s files that hackers use to demand payment for their release, typically with digital currency such as bitcoin.

This week, hackers held hostage the world’s largest meat processor, just weeks after the operator of an essential pipeline bringing gasoline to parts of the East Coast paid about $4.4 million to regain control of its operations and restore service.

Senior officials at the Federal Bureau of Investigation for years have likened the need to confront rising cyber threats to the post-9/11 scramble against international terrorism. But Mr. Wray said the wave of recent ransomware attacks had spotlighted the toll cyberattacks can have on all Americans.

“Now realizing it can affect them when they’re buying gas at the pump or buying a hamburger—I think there’s a growing awareness now of just how much we’re all in this fight together,” Mr. Wray said.

COMMENT:  It goes well beyond economic loss or inconvenience.  Future atacks, using new technology, could paralyze hospitals, or airliners in flight.   And a cyberattack can be joined by a classic terrorist attack to create chaos and fear.

Anyone with a computer is involved in this. 

June 4, 2021       Permalink

 

 

 

JUNE 3,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT:

NOW WE ARE ENLIGHTENED – FROM FOX:   Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez argued Thursday that authorities should stop building prisons and instead focus on underlying public health issues as New York City seeks to address a recent surge in violent crime.  New York Democrats, including Ocasio-Cortez, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Rep. Jamaal Bowman, called on Congress to earmark $400,000 toward a program called "Stand Up To Violence," which seeks to address gun violence through counseling and community outreach. Ocasio-Cortez said it was "not acceptable" to use jails as "garbage bins."  "If we want to reduce violent crime, if we want to reduce the number of people in our jails, the answer is to stop building more of them," Ocasio-Cortez said. "The answer is to make sure that we actually build more hospitals, we pay organizers, we get people mental health care and overall health care, employment, etc. It’s to support communities, not throw them away."  A nice thought, but we've found through sad experience that the most effective way to reduce crime is to apply the lessons of modern law enforcement.  One of those lessons is the certainty of punishment.  If would-be criminals believed they would almost certainly be punished, and incarcerated, they might well decide not to do the crime.  Remember, Rudy Giuliani reduced the murder rate in New York City by 80%. 

YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK – FROM GATEWAY PUNDIT:   Joe Biden is taking several days off to celebrate nurse Jill’s 70th birthday.  Biden arrived to Rehoboth Beach in Delaware Wednesday to spend a few days at home to celebrate nurse Jill’s 70th birthday.  Joe and Jill rode bikes in Cape Henlopen State Park in Delaware on Thursday as bystanders cheered.  Of course this was all for show to make it look like Joe Biden is spry.  Sycophantic reporters showed their support for Joe Biden taking a leisurely bike ride in the middle of the week...Imagine the media’s reaction if Trump took off on a Wednesday and spent several days putting around as gas prices surged, ransomware hackers attacked infrastructure and migrant kids were stuffed in Covid-infested cages.   If Trump did it, impeachment would be proposed.  A full Congressional investigation would demand to know who paid for the bikes.  And the air in the tires.

June 3, 2021       Permalink

 

THE REVOLT GROWS – OVERNIGHT:  One by one we see Americans revolting against the views of the new, woke, Democratic Party.  Virginia has the spotlight tonight.  From bizpacreview.com: 

Thanks to its increasing anti-police extremism, the Democrat Party has lost three influential voters in Virginia.

The three influential voters — Sheriff Chip Shuler of Smyth County, Sheriff John McClanahan of Buchanan County and Sheriff Brian Hieatt of Tazewell County — were once all Democrats. But not anymore.

Shuler made his switch two Mondays ago when he formally filed a membership application with the Smyth County Republican Committee and the application was promptly approved, as reported by local station WJHL.

“I am changing to the Republican Party because of the relentless attack on law enforcement by Democrats in Richmond and Washington. My deputies work hard to serve and protect the citizens of Smyth County,” he said in a press release at the time.

“As sheriff, it has been difficult to watch my deputies try to move forward during this unprecedented assault on our profession,” he said in a press release. We remain an honorable profession and should not be judged by the bad acts of a few,” he added.

Smyth County Republican Committee chair Adam Tolbert didn’t hesitate a second to welcome a new Republican to the team.

Welcome to the Republican Party, Sheriff Shuler! https://www.wjhl.com/news/local/smyth-county-sheriff-leaves-democratic-party-joins-gop/

“I congratulate Sheriff Shuler on taking this bold move to leave the Democratic Party and join the Republican Party. We are thrilled to have him as a member of the Republican Party in Smyth County,” he told WJHL.

McClanahan and Hieatt both made their conversions in 2020.

“My career is a large part of my life and I consider it to be my calling. I have said it many times but the Democratic Party that we know today is no longer the party my grandfather was involved in,” McClanahan said in a statement last September.

“The ideologies of the party have shifted away from those traditional values. Currently, the Democratic Party is going against everything I stand for, pushing for defunding the police and the taking away of safeguards that have been put in place for us,” 

COMMENT:  It's hard to know how many voters will be influenced by these party switchers.  As a general rule, endorsements are no match for the direct appeal of candidates.  But a buildup of party switches by law enforcement leaders might well make a difference, especially in close races.

The problem we face in Virginia is that the northern counties, which border on sinful Washington, are overpopulated with infiltrators from liberal cities.  They have turned Virginia from a conservative state to one that is purple, and tilting more to the blue.  I hope more sheriffs come forward and wake up the people of Virginia.  I can't believe they want to become the new Illinois or New Jersey.

June 3,  2021     Permalink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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