Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Sounds like a Red Cell Exercise (Rocketing in Israel / ISIS / etc.)

As some of you may know, a Red Cell is a group of people brought in to play an opposing force (either physically or as a table exercise) and/or brainstorm a plan as if they are the enemy. A critical function brought to the table by the best Red Cells is the ability to think like the opposition and all other factions in the exercise. Use the Red Cell idea when reading the following.

So this morning as I am getting ready for work, I run across the following article:

Evidence Appears To Show That ISIS Has Reached The Gaza Strip This post linked to the original source of the info here (Gatestone Institute Article).

Basically in a nutshell, the original article puts forth the idea that Hamas is beginning to lose control to ISIS in the Gaza Strip. I find that interesting, since Israel is currently under A LOT of rocket fire, and that the Gaza Strip is a key location for the origins of the rocket fire. Plus, Israel does not want ISIS so close to them.

But, But, this does not affect us here in America, right? Then I saw this article:

AP-ISIS Has Seized Thousands of Rockets With Chemical Warheads

My antenna start to tingle. AP story here.

But then, this afternoon, when I get back to my computer, it gets better:

AP Stealth Edits Iraq WMD Story (full story below)
Take a look at the time stamps on this Tatler post here, and this AP story here.
The Tatler post is based on the AP story, yet its timestamp is 3:21 pm Pacific Time, July 8. The AP story’s timestamp is 8:22 pm Eastern Time, July 8. Adjusting for the time zones, the Tatler story went live two hours before the AP story.
That’s not what actually happened. What actually happened is that the AP stealth edited the story. That timestamp is the only indication the AP has given that it edited its story after the fact.
And what an edit…
Here is the original lead, which I quoted at Tatler:
Iraq has informed the United Nations that the Islamic State extremist group has taken control of a vast former chemical weapons facility northwest of Baghdad where 2,500 chemical rockets filled with the deadly nerve agent sarin or their remnants were stored along with other chemical warfare agents.
Iraq’s U.N. Ambassador Mohamed Ali Alhakim said in a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon circulated Tuesday that “terrorist” groups entered the Muthanna site June 11 and seized weapons and equipment from the protection force guarding the facility.
Here’s the edited version:
The Islamic State extremist group has taken control of a vast former chemical weapons facility northwest of Baghdad, where remnants of 2,500 degraded chemical rockets filled decades ago with the deadly nerve agent sarin are stored along with other chemical warfare agents, Iraq said in a letter circulated Tuesday at the United Nations.
The U.S. government played down the threat from the takeover, saying there are no intact chemical weapons and it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to use the material for military purposes. (emphasis mine)
Iraq’s U.N. Ambassador Mohamed Ali Alhakim told U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a letter that “armed terrorist groups” entered the Muthanna site on June 11, detained officers and soldiers from the protection force guarding the facilities and seized their weapons. The following morning, the project manager spotted the looting of some equipment via the camera surveillance system before the “terrorists” disabled it, he said. (I asked myself why would I want to admit to such a failure, unless, he is trying publicly to shift any blame from Iraq to ISIS or even Iran)
The new version of the story is more than twice as long as the original. It adds several paragraphs written to play down the threat that ISIS’ seizure of the Saddam-era weapons facility poses. It’s clear from the above, and other edits that follow, that the AP published, then discussed the issue with the Obama administration and the United Nations, and then made very significant edits to its original story.
That’s fine, if the new facts clarify the truth and the AP acknowledges and explains its edits. The AP doesn’t acknowledge the edits. There is no note stating that its story was edited after publication. There’s no notification at all. Just the new timestamp.
Now my antenna are really tingling. Why? Drill down into the essence of the story. Is not Israel being ROCKETED right now? When was the facility looted? Nearly a month ago? How long would it take to move said possibly filled chemical warhead rockets to a location where they could be effectively launched against Israel? Through ISIS controlled territory? Are you beginning to see the bigger picture.

Now, it is a fact that Chemical Weapons do have a shelf life. But, what if, just one filled rocket makes it way into Israel? What do you think will happen next? Israel does have nuclear weapons. Would they use them? Against whom? Where does that lead? How would that affect the economy?

Some of the folks that I work with are of the opinion that these stories are back-channel propaganda in order to whip up the American people again to create the will to go back into Iraq in force. I do not know if I agree with that, but it is possible. 

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