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Tuesday Links

North American XF-108 Rapier

For your Tuesday-ness.


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  • I think the Lawfare blog gives the Iraqi government a tad too much credit. Yes, it functions, but it severely discriminates against the Sunni minority. It has rounded up military aged men from liberated areas in Anbar province and allowed its allied Shiite militias to abuse and murder untold numbers of them. It has still failed to restore basic services to Ramadi and other Anbar cities. If the Sunni Arab minority doesn’t see real and radical change, IS and its ilk will find plenty of sea to float in even if they no longer govern territory.

    Kurdistan is de facto independent so we are really talking about two countries anyway. It is highly unlikely that Iraq will survive once they retake Mosul.

    • CP

      Yeah, it seems noteworthy that in the Shi’a/Sunni/Kurd split, the territory of one of the two minorities (Kurds) is independent in all but name, while the other (Sunnis) is a war zone in which an anti-Baghdad entity still controls much.

      There’s a functional Iraqi-Shi’a state. Which is not nothing! And I’d probably rather live under it than under Assad’s rule over the border. But still.

    • Joe_JP

      So, more like “one cheer”?

    • wengler

      Yeah I couldn’t recommend that article. It criticized the Iran and Russia-backed Syrian government, while praising the Iran and US-backed Iraqi government. It almost seemed to be damning with faint praise the ability of the Iraqi militias to get technical and air assistance from US military forces. I’m sure the Syrian government and Hezbollah militias could also be functional enough to accept assistance from the US as they have from Russia. It’s neither here or there though.

  • delazeur

    That CIA board game article was interesting. In the last five years or so, I think there has been a big uptick in companies using games to teach employees about corporate operations. (For example, I used to work at a steel company that used a sort of custom-made Monopoly game to teach the blue collar workers about the larger business.)

    More interesting, though, was that this happened at SXSW. Increasingly I have to ask myself: “What is SXSW?” I guess it’s nice that more and more people are seeing the value of having crossover between technology, arts & culture, and business, but it defies simple categorization. Sometimes I can’t help but suspect that SXSW has become an excuse for corporate minions to get a company-funded vacation under the guise of a technology conference.

  • CP

    Having now read the North Korea one, what I’m getting is “how does North Korea evade sanctions? China, China, a little bit of China, some more help from China, and let’s not forget China. Also, China.”

  • Hush Kit is a fun site. I’ve written a couple things for them under my real name.

    It’s like “Top Gear” except for airplanes.

  • Warren Terra
  • The Pale Scot

    A friend of mine who was a welder at Lockheed told me he put weapon hard points on A-12/SR-71 s in what must of been the late seventies.

    I’d call that a Mach 3 intercepter. He said it could do Mach 2 at ballistic angles

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