A Lack Of Vigilance Before The Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

          

Faults Underlying Exercise Vigilant GuardStory by: (Author NameStaff Sgt. Raymond Drumsta – 138th Public Affairs Detachment
Dated: Thu, Nov 5, 2009
This map illustrates the earthquake fault lines in Western New York. An earthquake in the region is a likely event, says University of Buffalo Professor Dr. Robert Jacobi.
TONAWANDA, NY — An earthquake in western New York, the scenario that Exercise Vigilant Guard is built around, is not that far-fetched, according to University of Buffalo geology professor Dr. Robert Jacobi.
When asked about earthquakes in the area, Jacobi pulls out a computer-generated state map, cross-hatched with diagonal lines representing geological faults.
The faults show that past earthquakes in the state were not random, and could occur again on the same fault systems, he said.
“In western New York, 6.5 magnitude earthquakes are possible,” he said.
This possibility underlies Exercise Vigilant Guard, a joint training opportunity for National Guard and emergency response organizations to build relationships with local, state, regional and federal partners against a variety of different homeland security threats including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks.
The exercise was based on an earthquake scenario, and a rubble pile at the Spaulding Fibre site here was used to simulate a collapsed building. The scenario was chosen as a result of extensive consultations with the earthquake experts at the University of Buffalo’s Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research (MCEER), said Brig. Gen. Mike Swezey, commander of 53rd Troop Command, who visited the site on Monday.
Earthquakes of up to 7 magnitude have occurred in the Northeastern part of the continent, and this scenario was calibrated on the magnitude 5.9 earthquake which occurred in Saguenay, Quebec in 1988, said Jacobi and Professor Andre Filiatrault, MCEER director.
“A 5.9 magnitude earthquake in this area is not an unrealistic scenario,” said Filiatrault.
Closer to home, a 1.9 magnitude earthquake occurred about 2.5 miles from the Spaulding Fibre site within the last decade, Jacobi said. He and other earthquake experts impaneled by the Atomic Energy Control Board of Canada in 1997 found that there’s a 40 percent chance of 6.5 magnitude earthquake occurring along the Clareden-Linden fault system, which lies about halfway between Buffalo and Rochester, Jacobi added.
Jacobi and Filiatrault said the soft soil of western New York, especially in part of downtown Buffalo, would amplify tremors, causing more damage.
“It’s like jello in a bowl,” said Jacobi.
The area’s old infrastructure is vulnerable because it was built without reinforcing steel, said Filiatrault. Damage to industrial areas could release hazardous materials, he added.
“You’ll have significant damage,” Filiatrault said.
Exercise Vigilant Guard involved an earthquake’s aftermath, including infrastructure damage, injuries, deaths, displaced citizens and hazardous material incidents. All this week, more than 1,300 National Guard troops and hundreds of local and regional emergency response professionals have been training at several sites in western New York to respond these types of incidents.
Jacobi called Exercise Vigilant Guard “important and illuminating.”
“I’m proud of the National Guard for organizing and carrying out such an excellent exercise,” he said.
Training concluded Thursday.

The Bowls of Wrath Cometh: Revelation 16

WW3:

WW3 looming as ‘no good options’ remain in ‘dangerous’ China-US conflict over Taiwan

WORLD WAR 3 is an ever-growing threat as the US and China near a “dangerous situation” over Taiwan, experts have claimed.

By CHARLIE BRADLEY

06:00, Mon, Aug 29, 2022

US lawmakers have followed in the steps of Nancy Pelosi this week to visit Taiwan as China continues to threaten the island. Ms Pelsoi’s visit earlier this month angered Beijing, who then launches military drills near Taiwan in response. Senator Marsha Blackburn said she will not let China prevent her from visiting Taiwan. She said: “Taiwan is our strongest partner in the Indo-Pacific Region. Regular high-level visits to Taipei are long-standing U.S. policy,” Blackburn said in a statement. “I will not be bullied by Communist China into turning my back on the island.”

Taiwan has not declared independence, and China considers the island a province of the country.

But the US has stood up for Taiwan’s right to self-governance, even vowing to defend the country should it come under attack.

Kristen Gunness, an expert on the Chinese military from the Rand Corporation think-tank, told the Financial Times that hostility between Washington and Beijing is leading to a “dangerous situation.”

She said: “Their [China’s] presence in the waters and airspace around Taiwan demonstrates that they can control it if they wish to.

“It is a dangerous time in terms of potential for escalation when you have a normalised PLA (Chinese military) presence that could potentially restrict freedom of operations and freedom of movement, which is a key US objective.

WW3: Biden and Xi are at risk of escalation near Taiwan (Image: getty)

“It was a large demonstration, and there hasn’t been the kind of diplomatic and economic follow-up that you might have expected. I think that is because we don’t want to escalate it into a larger conflict.”

Ashley Townshend, senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace think-tank, warns that the US and Taiwan are now at a disadvantage.

This is because China is more willing to escalate while the US wants to keep the situation calm, she argued.

Mr Townshend said: “The status quo has been reset in ways less favourable to the US and Taiwan, and there are no good options for the US to respond to this.

“Like all status quo players, if you play responsibly and your adversary is willing to escalate, you lose the round.”

The Russian Horn Prepares to Attack Europe

Su-24

‘Everything Is Ready!’: Belarus Says Its Planes Can Attack Using Russia’s Nuclear Weapons

ByJack Buckby

Russia’s Su-24 bomber. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

Belarus Leader Lukashenko Hints at Nuclear Strikes From Belarusian Planes – Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko announced on Friday that his country’s aircraft are capable of carrying Russian nuclear weapons – a statement seen widely as explicit support for the Kremlin’s war efforts and against the allied support of NATO countries to Ukraine.

The statement referred to Belarus’ Su024 aircraft which were recently converted to carry Russian nuclear weapons, and comes as Russian President Vladimir Putin promises to increase the nation’s military personnel by 137,000.

Speaking to reporters in Minsk, Lukasheko warned Western countries that neither helicopters nor planes will help if they seek “escalation” – an implied threat of nuclear attacks on NATO countries.

“We, along with Putin, said once in St. Petersburg that we will adapt the Belarusian Su [-24] planes as well to make them capable to carry nuclear arms. Do you think we were just yakking? Everything is ready!” the Belarusian leader said.

The news from Belarus follows a bizarre greeting from President Lukashenko to Ukraine on the country’s 31st Independence Day. Ukrainian officials rejected the greeting from the Belarusian dictator on Wednesday, slamming the “cynical” message.

Writing on his official website, Lukashenko celebrated Ukraine’s independence from the Soviet Union and wished all citizens of the country “peaceful skies, tolerance, courage, strength and success in restoring a decent life.”

“I am convinced that today’s disputes will not be able to destroy the centuries-old foundation of sincere good neighbourly relations between the peoples of the two countries,” the statement continued.

The comments were understandably looked at with suspicion by Ukrainian officials given Lukashenko’s close ties to Russia and implied support of Russian President Vladimir Putin since the war began on February 23. The Belarusian leader sees the situation differently, however.

Mykhailo Podolyak, a senior adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, slammed the message in a tweet this week. Podolyak claimed the Belarusian leader “truly believes the world does not notice his participation in crimes against Ukraine.

“That is why he cynically wishes us a ‘peaceful sky’ while allowing deadly rockets to hit us.”

Belarus

Russian President Putin. Image Credit: Russian Government.

What to Makes of Belarus? Lukashenko Sees Things Differently

In May this year, Lukashenko claimed told The Associated Press that he did not expect the war in Ukraine to last so long and that he was doing “everything” he could to bring the war to an end. Describing the war as a “special military operation” – the term used by the Kremlin to describe the invasion – Lukashenko accused also Kyiv of “provoking” Moscow.

“But I am not immersed in this problem enough to say whether it goes according to plan, like the Russians say, or like I feel it. I want to stress one more time, I feel like this operation has dragged on,” Lukashenko said.

Jack Buckby is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.

The Bowls of Wrath: Revelation 16

Nuclear Armageddon

Nuclear weapons pose a grave threat to the future of humanity — even worse than climate change


Ali Hassan BangwarAugust 28, 2022

The writer is a freelancer based in Kandhkot, Sindh. He can be reached at alihassanb.34@gmail.com


The world faces “a nuclear danger not seen since the height of the Cold War” and “humanity is just one misunderstanding, one miscalculation away from nuclear annihilation”, said UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres earlier this month during the opening ceremony of the 10th Review Conference of Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty ratified in 1970. Guterres’ warning should serve as a wake-up call against the potential nuclear catastrophe on the horizons of Earth.

However, the growing nuclear threat failed to inspire meaningful discourse. The subject of nuclear policy and the question of the necessity of nuclear weapons in modern times are almost non-existent in global mainstream media and the public debate. Perhaps, the international leadership is yet to acknowledge the intensity of the menace. Nuclear weapons pose a grave threat to the future of humanity — even worse than climate change — as the former is unpredictable and a cause of immediate concern. Though the global leadership has been pushing for greater efforts to wrestle with climate change, no consistent campaign could have evolved to address the looming nuclear threat. Over seven and half decades of living under nuclear shadow have developed a sense of nuclear fatalism in the global psyche. The global complacency about nukes is tantamount to an implicit call for a nuclear holocaust.

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The disregard for nuclear commitments and an increasing nuclear stockpile reflect growing global passivity. With the current nuclear stockpile standing at around 13000, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has projected a considerable growth in the number of nuclear bombs in the years to come. In his assessment, UK security adviser Stephen Lovegrove said the nuclear threat is higher today than it was during the cold war, warning that a breakdown of dialogue among the rival powers could trigger a nuclear war in Eurasia. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and Putin’s warning of a nuclear attack on NATO has put the world in imminent danger. The ongoing escalation in the Taiwan Strait is fraught with risks of nuclear misadventures. Multiple powder kegs exist today with nuclear weapons on standby on hair triggers. Pakistan-India, US-China, US-Russia-NATO, Iran-Israel-US, North Korea-South Korea-US are potential nuclear flashpoints today. A minor mistake, misconception, or a technical glitch is enough to ignite the cascade of a nuclear inferno.

Moreover, the growth of rogue states, failed states and non-state actors adds to the nuclear threats. The unchecked proliferation of nuclear-grade fissile material and the nuclear ambitions of a growing number of states compound the risk. All the pledges of disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control desperately failed. Interests and biased stances of major world powers, the US being in the forefront, weakened the international nuclear control regimes.

Though the assertions of the proponents of nuclear weapons as a source of stability might be grounded in logic or custom, we should not forget that the environment for nuclear wars thrives in anarchy — a realm far beyond the international cannons and conventions of warfare. As the times have been fast-changing, so do the context, composition and behaviour of the international actors. In an international anarchic environment where fundamental human rights face serious blows, even in the small-scale conflicts of predictable nature, expecting belligerent countries or rogue elements to display considerate cautious in highly charged security domains is nothing more than an eyewash.

It is high time to forge a renewed front against the existential threat facing the Earth today. De-escalation combined with implementing disarmament, denuclearisation and arms control regimes would be giant leaps. The global civil society, international media, human rights watchdogs, authors and the public need to push national and international leadership for a nuclear-free world. Only pragmatism and sanity would help undo the impending nuclear Armageddon against the humanity today.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 28th, 2022.

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Iran Attacks the US Again in Iraq

3 rockets land near air base housing US experts in W. Iraq

3 rockets land near air base housing US experts in W. Iraq

Three rockets landed outside the perimeter of an air base housing US military experts and agencies in Iraq’s western province of Anbar, an Iraqi army source said

IANS

Published: 31 May 2022, 8:38 AM

Engagement: 127

Three rockets landed outside the perimeter of an air base housing US military experts and agencies in Iraq’s western province of Anbar, an Iraqi army source said.

The three rockets landed on Monday evening near the Ayn al-Asad airbase near the town of al-Baghdadi, nearly 190 km northwest of the capital Baghdad, causing no casualties, an officer from Anbar Operations Command told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

After the attack, the Iraqi security forces found the rocket launchers in an area outside the town of Haditha, nearly 210-km northwest of Baghdad, the source said as quoted by Xinhua news agency report.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet, but uncontrolled militias frequently target Iraqi military bases housing US military advisors across the country, and the US embassy in Baghdad has been frequently targeted by mortar and rocket attacks.

The Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi confirmed on December 29, 2021, the end of the combat mission of the US-led coalition forces in the country.

How will the Iran-Obama deal work?

 IRAN’S DEPUTY Foreign Minister and Chief Nuclear Negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani meets with Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service (EEAS), Enrique Mora, in Tehran, in May.  (photo credit: Iran’s Foreign Ministry/WANA)

How will the Iran deal work? – explainer

Iran’s nuclear talks woke up again last month and Iran has been making demands on the sanctions relief and guarantees front.

By LAHAV HARKOV

Published: AUGUST 28, 2022 16:52

   

IRAN’S DEPUTY Foreign Minister and Chief Nuclear Negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani meets with Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service (EEAS), Enrique Mora, in Tehran, in May.

After months of hibernation, Iran nuclear talks woke up again last month, when the European Union presented what it said was the final draft of the deal on July 21. Since then, Iran submitted its response, continuing to make demands on the sanctions relief and guarantees front, which American diplomats and Israeli sources say Washington did not accept.

However, the sides agree on most of the overall deal based on the July 21 draft.

The EU text describes the implementation in four steps.

China Sends Nuclear Warning to Taiwan

China Sends Nuclear-Capable Bombers to Frighten Taiwan

1 Elul 5782 – August 28, 2022

Photo Credit: Chensiyuan, DXR / WikimediaTaipei, capital of Taiwan at sunrise on December 15, 2014.

China sent four nuclear-capable bombers to fly near Taiwan on Saturday in a clear effort to intimidate the island’s government.

The move came one day after US Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) met with Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen in the capital city of Taipei.

“I just landed in Taiwan to send a message to Beijing – we will not be bullied,” she tweeted upon her arrival.

Blackburn’s visit followed those by Congressional House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) earlier this month, Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb and others.

Delegations have also arrived from Japan and Lithuania; more are planned from the UK, Germany, Denmark, Canada and Australia.

Beijing has repeatedly warned that it will not tolerate visits by American lawmakers to Taiwan, over which it claims sovereignty and which it has threatened to annex by force.

In response to those visits, Beijing has targeted Taiwan with missile tests, maritime incursions, cyber attacks and blockades against the island’s shipping ports and aerial traffic.

China claims the foreign delegations are violating its “One China” policy and has threatened “resolute and forceful measures” in response. It seeks the end of Taiwan’s independence through the process of unification and has not ruled out the use of force in pursuit of this goal. However, Taiwan has not been ruled by mainland China since 1895 and today is a democratic entity while China continues to be ruled by a communist government.

Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said the Chinese military exercises “will not stop Taiwan from seeking support internationally. . .We will not stop making friends just because of the Chinese threat to Taiwan.”

However, Taiwan’s friendship with other countries has come at a price. China held seven days of unprecedented land, naval and air force military drills around the island this month, with live-fire exercises using ballistic missiles that flew over Taiwan and landed in the waters claimed by Japan as its exclusive economic zones.

China’s contentions about Taiwan are similar to Russia’s claims about Ukraine, and China and Russia — both nuclear powers — are forming an alliance. Beijing has strengthen its ties with Russia and has avoided criticizing Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine. 

Officials at the Pentagon and Air Force have warned that China is making rapid progress in building up its arsenal of nuclear weapons, Air Force Magazine reported this week.

The Pentagon has had to revise its estimates of how many nuclear warheads China will possess by the end of this decade. The country at present has an “increasingly large, modern and formidable force with a wide array of both nuclear and conventional weapons platforms,” according to a primer produced by the China Aerospace Studies Institute (CASI) at Air University.

China has created a “nuclear triad,” adding nuclear capability to its submarine force and air force as well as the existing rocket force, with a corresponding increase in the number of nuclear warheads, CASI director Dr. Brendan S. Mulvaney told Air Force Magazine.

“It is very telling that they’re spending that much time and effort in the nuclear forces and diversifying, right? That’s the part that really makes people – or should make people – pay some attention to that,” Mulvaney told the news outlet.