Civil Defense Perspectives July 2014 Vol. 30 No. 5
In Haitian folklore, a zombie is a dead person physically revived through necromancya bokorsorcerer. Zombies, having have no will of their own, are slaves of the bokor. Living persons in Haiti who were thought to be zombies may either have been drugged or mentally ill. Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives May 2014 Vol. 30 No. 4
[published July 2014]
Long before Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo on June 28, 1914, by a group of five Serbs and one Bosnian Muslim, shots fired by a British militia company at Jumonville Glen, near what is now Pittsburgh, launched what some consider a world war. The French and Indian War, also known as the Seven Years War, killed at least a million men, women, and children in North America, South America, Europe, Cuba, Africa, India, Cuba, the Philippines, and the Caribbean. The young lieutenant colonel who lost control of his men was George Washington, writes Richard Maybury (EWR, May 2014). Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives March 2014 Vol. 30 No. 3
“Forward, the Light Brigade!”
Was there a man dismay’d?
Not tho’ the soldier knew
Someone had blunder’d:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
“The Charge of the Light Brigade,” Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1854
Even small, seemingly insignificant places, like Sarajevo, can spark global conflicts. Crimea is not strategically insignificant. The [First] Crimean War fundamentally altered the balance of power in Europe, which had kept the peace for three decades after the Treaty of Vienna ended the Napoleonic Wars. And the outcome set the stage for World War I. Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives January 2014 Vol. 30 No. 2
[published April 2014]
In his 2014 State of the Union message, Barack Obama made some startling claims:
We’ve had “more oil produced at home than we buy from the rest of the world, the first time that’s happened in nearly twenty years” (see transcript at http://tinyurl.com/k6jjrls).
“I’ll act on my own to slash bureaucracy and streamline the permitting process for key projects….” Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives November 2013 Vo. 30 No. 1 [published January 2014]
In its Fifth Assessment Report (AR-5), the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has to confront some inconvenient truths, such as the 16-year “pause” in global warming. Even Nature, “one of the most alarmist voices in the climate debate,” is having to “walk back its past predictions of climate apocalypse,” writes Joseph Bast of the Heartland Institute. Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives July 2013 Vol. 29 No. 5
[published April 2014]
“We can turn USA into radioactive dust,” stated Dmitry Kiselyov, head of the new Russian state television outlet, reminding the world that because of some 8,500 nuclear warheads, Russia can do whatever it pleases (John Ransom, Townhall 3/18/13).
The perceived apocalyptic threat may well have helped keep the Cold War from becoming hot. However, 3 years after Hiroshima, William H. Hessler warned against reliance on nuclear weapons (“The A-Bomb Won’t Do What You Think,” Collier’s 9/17/1949, http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/6450/). Its rightful place in military policy is very restricted. It is an instrument of destruction, not of victory. We need to keep it ready for retaliation, to deter an attack, he wrote. Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives May 2013 Vol. 29 No. 4. [published January 2014]
On Jan 8, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson declared war on poverty. Now, $20 trillion later, the poverty rate has barely budged, and welfare spending is up 375% in constant dollars.
In contrast, the war on prosperity is winnable. The U.S. government is waging this war against Americans on multiple fronts. Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives March 2013, Vol. 29 No. 3
In the 1330s, Petrarch expressed the view that European culture had stagnated and drifted into what he called the Dark Ages since the fall of Rome in the 5th century, pointing to the loss of many classical Latin texts and to the corruption of the language in contemporary discourse. Continue reading
Civil Defense Perspectives January 2013, Vol. 29 No. 2
The Happy New Year news is that Kyoto is dead. It expired at the end of 2012, leaving the world with 58% more greenhouse gases than in 1990, as opposed to the 5% reduction sought.
The second phase started Jan 1, 2013. Russia decided to discontinue its participation, and Ukraine and Belarus may follow suit. Canada is officially out. The U.S., China, and India have not committed to reducing emissions (Voice of Russia 12/31/12, quoted in CCNet 1/2/13). Continue reading