The John Batchelor Show

Thursday 2 May 2013

Air Date: 
May 02, 2013

Photo, above:  See Hour 1, Block D,  Jillian Kay Melchior, NRO, on Turtle Island


Hour One

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 1, Block A: Edward Hayes, criminal defense attorney par excellence, in re: Reading Miranda rights to Dzhoshkhar Tsarnaev after sixteen hours of highly productive discussions with the FBI.  I'm not a fan of denying these rights to a US citizen; this guy was wounded and groggy, s I don't mind waiting more hours. Judge Mukasey in WSJ op-ed today on warrantless arrests: not that Tsarnaev was to be denied rights, but that the law, itself, provides a good deal more flexibility than was   to utilized.   Sixth Amendment provides a right to legal representation – but no more.  The time of interrogation is not suitable for him to have a lawyer, under Public Safety exception.  Miranda is to prevent your from using a statements under a court of law for conviction. Turn to a growing sphere of characters around the Tsarnaev brothers – wife, friends who threw away evidence; US authorities now in Mahatchkala now in Daghestan.

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 1, Block B: Edward Pinto, in re:   Housing Activists Convince Obama to Dump DeMarco  ‪The anti-DeMarco campaign is part of a broader movement to hold Wall Street banks accountable for crashing the economy, destroying the . . . 

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 1, Block C: . John Roskam, Institute of Public Affairs, exec dir, Melbourne, in re: huge percentage of populace in on public salaries: much of natl income is from natural resources.  Has become a serious problem. Public sector jobs grew by 60% in five [?] years. Conservatives fear cutting taxes last the public-eservice unions charge that they’re also trying to undercut unions.    Lots of promises from govt that are not funded: "unfunded mandates" in the US.  PM promises to hire thousands more teachers – which isn’t needed; rather, need better-quality teachers. Funding for people with disabilities: about to shift from funding for people with severe disabilities to including people with a really bad headache.  Australia is already in record debt. Not as bad as Europe or hues, every indication is that we're heading your direction.  Jerry Brown, California, threatens to raise taxes not on the middle class but on the rich; does Labour in Australia succeed in taxing ht idle class?  Australia has one of the most progressive tax structures in the world  - our rich pay the largest percentage  in OECD; 40%  of our populace receives govtl checks.  Australia's household electricity is the most expansive in the world; our water utilities are extremely expensive. Cost of living – transport, roads, utilities  –is confiscatory. Strangling entrepreneurship.   Alleged mistreatment of some cattle led to govt overnight forbidding sales of cattle to Indonesia – didn't even tell the Indonesians – which caused huge numbers of people to have to walk off the farms.

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 1, Block D:  Jillian Kay Melchior, NRO, in re: Turtlle Island, visible from Taiwan (shaped like a turtle); at age 15, men start fishing; has been an island of fishermen for 200 years.   Japanese clam that they own the islands and sometimes expel Taiwanese with water cannon; "there's plenty of fish here; why can’t we all just share?"  Meanwhile, the PRC/PLA/CCP just declared Turtle Island (along with Taiwan) "a core interest" of China.  Taiwan isn't even allowed to be an observer at the UN. Why can’t Ma Ying-jeou go to Beijing (which historically has liked him) to work out an agreement?  China has sent major warships through the Okinawa Prefecture, harassed Taiwanese. Meanwhile, Beijing declares that the troublemaker is the US! All of China's neighbors are quite nervous about China, Xi Jinping, the PLA.  China has faced a very weak US for the last five years, China wd never have done this during a Bush presidency. US is bound by treaty to defend the Senkakus; Japan not at all sure that the US would honor its obligations. Neither is Taiwan, of course.  When I was talking with the villagers, everyone in their family, their history, their whole world, has been a fisherman. Japanese big-eye, bream. If that became impossible,

 On a cool night in late March, a retired fisherman ushered guests into the Temple of Matsu, Taiwan’s goddess of the sea. Surrounded by incense and sculpted dragons, lit by a buzzing blue fluorescent light, the sculpted icon faces the East China Sea. Traditionally, the village presents its offerings to Matsu twice a month, praying for bountiful catches and the safety of its men on the waters. But these days, some also bring a simpler, more fundamental petition: that their way of life, basically unaltered for more than two centuries, will manage to last another generation. The 106 families who make up the village of Guishan, located in Taiwan’s Yilan Province, find themselves in the midst of a tense geopolitical struggle in the East China Sea. Though the stakes are international, they’re also intensely local: About 96 percent of Guishan’s households support themselves by fishing, but their traditional waters are located in a widely disputed territory about a six-hour boat ride from Taiwan’s northeast coast.  In Taiwan, the disputed islands are known as the Diaoyutai; the other claimants, China and Japan, call them the Diaoyu and the Senkakus, respectively. Sovereignty over the disputed islands has become part of an overall struggle for regional power, and . . . [more]

Hour Two

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 2, Block A:  David Schenker, Aufzien fellow and director of the Program on Arab Politics at The Washington Institute, in re: Jordan, and King Abdullah’s visit to Washington; and Egypt.  Secy Hagel's failure in Cairo is an across-the board failure: Muslim Brotherhood can’t govern. Hagel fails to understand the nature of governance and ht economic situation in Egypt.  Behind closed doors, don’t know what was said, but there's obviously a difference of opinion between Hamas and the Ikhwan.  Egypt doesn’t want Sinai to spiral out of control, threat of unmanageable violence in Egypt and total end of tourism (only hard-currency generator).  MB putting its members into the military; will the military push back? Historically, the mil wouldn’t en allow wives to wear hijabs.    Jordan has been an excellent partner to the US in the region. US may send a few hundred mil to cover refugee influx; a huge problem for a govt with a 30% budget deficit. Also want US support in security, esp if chem. weapons are used.  Hagel said we'd put 200 contingency troops in Jordan – leading to weeks of protest on the street. Very bad error by Hagel to speak of it.  Close to 500K Syrian refugees now camped in Jordan; if Assad takes out a certain electricity plant, another million cd arrive in days. Disaster.

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 2, Block B:  . Malcolm Hoenlein, Conference of Presidents, in re: A hundred or 200 missiles with sarin now scattered over Syria, incl in places where the govt has no control.  Nasrallah went to Iran: Quds Force and Gulfies: 100,000 men being recruited and trained to defend Shia area's around the Middle East. Giving money to Sunnis who switched to Shi'ism.  Seems to be greater confidence htat they can hold heir ground; worry also along Jordanian border.  Russians and Hezbollah moving to intervene militarily both to protect Assad and to prevent intrusions by foreign powers.  The US uuses indistinct language abt "rebels" were encouraging weapons to be sold widely, and air forces to fly weapons to Turkey where CIA agents hand them over to joihadists inSyria: gunrunning. Everybody in the region knows what's going on; only Americans don’t.  Are we heading ti NATO intervention?  Mmm, not too likely. Many unscheduled flights from Teheran to Khartoum. Creit for giving Hamas 50,000 weapons, for things they denied in the past. Arab League and Secy Kerry's strange remarks:  helatched non to the Saudi plan of 2002, is moribund. Made moderate adjustments-  "minor and swaps, Israel & Palestine" – pushed by Qatar, the most extreme. A diktat.

White House is rethinking its opposition to arming Syrian rebels, U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said at a news conference with British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond on May 2, AP reported. The administration is considering a range of options, Hagel said, though he personally has not decided whether it would be wise to do so. Hammond said his government had not yet provided arms to the Syrian rebels, but that it would not rule out such support. A Western intervention in Syria would not be as clean or effective as some believe.

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 2, Block C:  .Claudia Rosett, investigtive reporter (broke the U.N. Oil-for-Food scandal), in re: Iran at the United Nations, UNESCO.

Let the French Pay for UNESCO  Here comes the next chapter in perverse U.S. priorities at the United Nations. While the federal government has been pleading that it is too broke to provide White House tours or pay air-traffic controllers. [more]

President Obama likes to describes Iran as “isolated.” But there is nothing lonely about Iran’s berth at the United Nations, where in the corridors and on the boards of powerful agencies, the Islamic Republic has been cultivating its own mini-empire.   How can that be? Iran is in mocking violation of four U.N. Security Council sanctions resolutions demanding an end to its illicit nuclear activities. The General Assembly has passed a series of resolutions condemning Iran’s atrocious human-rights record (albeit with almost as many abstentions as “yes” votes). The U.N.‘s main host country, the United States, lists Iran as the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. Yet Iran is no pariah at the U.N., where there are no in-house penalties for being under sanctions or for violating them. Among the 193 member states, terror-sponsoring, uranium-enriching rogue regimes enjoy the same access, privileges and immunities as Canada or Japan—and at far less expense in U.N. dues. Monstrous human-rights records don’t interfere with acquiring plum seats, either. The U.N. has always made room for murderous governments—from the U.N.‘s charter seat on the Security Council for Stalin’s Soviet Union to Syria’s current post on the human-rights committee of the U.N. Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization.  [more]

Thursday  25 March 2013 / Hour 2, Block D:  Michael J Totten, contributing editor for World Affairs, has reported from the Middle East, the Balkans, and the former Soviet Union, and author, The Road to Fatimah Gate; in re: the decline of Hezbollah; trip to Lebanon; Syria. Hezbollah is involved in the Syrian civil war not eagerly but desperately. If Assad falls, Nasrallah loses half his income.  Hezb peaked in 2000, had support from Sunnis, and even sone Christians; when the Israelis left in 2000, its support receded to abt 2/3 of Lebanon's Shia population.  Has a few tactical alliances, but that's dwindling, Sunnis are abt 90% of Muslims in the world; complaints abt massive Hezb corruption – used to be considered the only clean party in Lebanon.  There are a few funerals daily in the Bekaa, but that's not a big percentage. Hezb guys in Syria are the high-level guys, and it's those who're getting killed.  NATO intervention in Syria coming?  Lead to a congflagration? Cd be, but Hezb has two state sponsors; answers to Iran. If Iran had to choose 'twixt nuke program and Assad's survival, they'd pick the nukes.  If NATO got involved, no way could Assad survive, so Hezbollah is very afraid.

Hour Three

Thursday 2 May 2013 / Hour 3, Block A:  Malcolm Hoenlein, Conference of Presidents, in re:  Hamas-Fatah split now worse Arab League leaders met w Secy Kerry, emerged with 2002 proposal, incl "minor swaps of land" – which now doesn’t work It's Not territorial, its abt conditions that Israel can’t physically accept; Arab League drifting what direction?  The gangster Nasrallah has changed his position: threatens to send 100s of thousands of fighters into Syria; asserted no Iranian forces in Syria (demonstrably not true); Iran increasingly active in Gaza – cargo planes unscheduled form Teheran to Khartoum to deliver weapons; Suleimani (al Quds Force of IRGC): Iraq, Iran, Gufies, Shiites, coming together to protect and dominate Syria. Saudi and Qatari money buying weapons, sending to Turkey, whence CI sends them into Syria. Still see Libyan weapons today going into Gaza. Split inside Iran: Ahmadinejad poses himself as a moderate. Issues before elections: Khamenei's foundations; billions held by IRGC, 36 firms on stock exchange.  Khamenei has backed a candidate.  Knives at backs in Iran's palaces.  During Iran's Green revolution, US silence undermined the Iranian people. Cultural clash on many levels. The vipers are at each other.

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 3, Block B:  . Zvi Mazel, Israel's Ambassador to Sweden, 2002-2004, in re: Sinai. radicalization has penetrated he and, it’s become a lawless country.  Hamas has different goals from Muslim Brothers; MB wants a tranquil border w Israel while Hamas wants to keep sending rockets into Israel.   Terrorists from Gaza connect w Bredouins n Sinai. Egyptian army can’t do its job; tanks are not the medicine – need to collaborate with local Bedouins. Failure to do so means Egypt – and Israel – will pay the price.  Bedu story: many generations in Sinai, but time has changed and they’ve become part of Egypt; Cairo needs their help but no economic dvpt at all so now it’s too late. No work, no education, nothing, have been influenced by Hamas + al Qaeda. Egypt suddenly allows Bedu to buy land, a day late and a dollar short. Like the Arab Spring: only radical Islam emerged. Sinai is a failed state, will be insecure for years.  Democracy is not on the table – `not par of Islamic or Arab tradition – so radical Islam will prevail. Israel has to deal with it at its border.

‘Anarchy in Sinai and no solution in sight’   The first Egyptian reactions to the grad rockets that targeted Eilat were of flat denial. No fewer than three individuals – a self-proclaimed expert, a retired general and a military commentator – explained at length that there was no way the missiles had been launched from Sinai.  One said that determining what had happened would take time and would require satellite images; another argued that the Iron Dome system, recently deployed to the Eilat area, is designed to intercept only projectiles launched from beyond Israel’s borders — the rockets must have been launched from Israeli territory, he duly concluded. South Sinai’s governor joined the chorus, rejecting out of hand the notion that the rockets could have been shot from the peninsula.  It may be remembered that in December 2010, this governor’s predecessor accused the Mossad of dispatching a shark to the waters of Sharm el-Sheikh in order to harm local tourism. A “high ranking army source wishing to remain anonymous” added . . . [more]

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 3, Block C:  . David M Drucker, Roll Call GOPpers column, in re: Exclusive: GOP Launches iPhone-Like, High-Tech Data Operation Priebus is seeking to retool how the party collects and shares data. National Republicans are building a new data-sharing platform as the party moves to close a digital divide with Democrats that became glaringly apparent in the aftermath of the 2012 presidential election. Per a sneak peek provided to CQ Roll Call, the Republican National Committee is set to announce a partnership with two third-party entities designed to facilitate unprecedented data generation and sharing across all GOP party committees, consultants, vendors and the conservative outside groups that have become increasingly active in political campaigns. The effort, which could cost up to $20 million, stems from recommendations made by the Growth and Opportunity Project, the RNC’s internal autopsy of what went wrong last year commissioned by Chairman Reince Priebus.

“One of the biggest priorities identified by the Growth and Opportunity Project was the need to improve our data as a party, but also to increase access to data,” RNC spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski said. Last cycle, the RNC engaged in voter-file list exchanges with other party committees, including the National Republican Congressional Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee. To guard against the potential for illegal coordination with these committees, Data Trust, a separate entity whose chairman of the board is former RNC Chairman Mike Duncan, facilitated this list sharing. Full story

Thursday 2 May 2013  / Hour 3, Block D:   Sid Perkins, Science, in re: PaleoAmerica travels: Polynisians in Brazil - how?  Find Polynesian DNA in a group of indigenous Brazilians, and explanations of how it might have got there (Interestingly, it most likely didn’t get there from Polynesians trading and interbreeding with residents of the west coast of South America) [more]

Hour Four 

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 4, Block A:  Dan Henninger, WSJ, in re: WONDER LAND  Henninger: Presidential Followership

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 4, Block B:  John Minnich,, in re: China Continues to Pour Money Into Interior Infrastructure   Beijing pursues far-reaching development programs such as the industrialization of the Yangtze River region not always because they make economic sense -- often they do not -- but because it must do so to sustain the basic social and economic structures that secure the regime. 

Thursday  2 May 2013  / Hour 4, Block C:  Robert Zimmerman,,  in re: The European Space Agency is investigating the possibility that the Progress docking to ISS on April 26 might have damaged equipment needed by their ATV cargo ship.  The damage, caused by the undeployed Progress antenna, appears to have involved a navigational aid needed for ATV-4 … the Laser Radar Reflector (LRR) target. The LRR is needed for the automatic docking of the European ATV during the last part of the rendezvous operations. If the damage is confirmed, the device, recently replaced during an EVA by the Russian crew due to contamination of the optical section, will need to be replaced again. In this event, the European cargo ship could potentially be delayed for several months. ATV-4, named Albert Einstein, has been already delayed from April to June because of a glitch in an avionics box. NASA revealed Tuesday that last April the Fermi Gamma-Ray Telescope barely avoided a collision with an abandoned Russian satellite.  Fermi mission scientists first learned of the space collision threat on March 29, 2012 when they received a notice that the space telescope and Cosmos 1805 would miss each other by just 700 feet (213.4 meters). The mission team monitored the situation over the next day and it became clear that the two spacecraft, traveling in different orbits, would zip through the same point in space within 30 milliseconds of one another, NASA officials said. They used Fermi’s thrusters to shift its orbit enough so the two spacecraft missed each other by 6 miles

Thursday  2 May 2013 / Hour 4, Block D:   Andrew Balter, in re:  ScienceShot: The Shrinking of the Hobbit's Brain  New measurements may help reveal where a diminutive human species came from  SCIENCENOW

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