Time to Relieve Pacific Command? Another US Destroyer in Collision, This One Much Further South Than Reported, Near Disputed Chinese Base

By Bernard Betancourt. On Sunday August 20th at approximately 6:24 A.M. Japan time, the Liberian Flagged MV Alnic MC (Alnic) collided with the USS John McCain. Initial assessments from the Pacific Command are that the Alnic’s bow, its forward-most section, hit the USS McCain’s aft port side (left side near the back end of the ship) approximately 150 miles east from the Straights of Malacca, and about 100 miles from shore (based on data from marinetraffic.com). The collision occurred in the morning, at or near sunrise under partly cloudy skies and minimal sea conditions.

There are numerous issues that will require thorough investigation, but what’s obvious now is that accident occurred in open waters. And importantly, the USS McCain was much further south than the initial headline-grabbing naval operations originally stated. In fact, the collision occurred near the disputed South China Sea Islands where China has already built one base. Also nearby is Mischief Reef, about 100 miles from the coast of the Philippines. This location is where a new base is currently under consideration for construction by the Chinese.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

In this situation let’s begin with the ugly. Ten US sailors are missing, and five are injured. That alone should be cause for pause. If the issue of strict maritime law plays out, right-of-way is going to be a major factor in determining fault and for the most part all parties will be held responsible in one way or another. Plus, one could ask why the USS McCain was that far south to begin with when their supposed operations were well to the northeast of the collision.

There really is no good news, but at least it appears at first blush that the USS McCain was likely not at fault. Based upon the Collision Regulations and the subsection on “Rules of the Road,” it appears the Liberian-flagged ship is likely to blame. But again, nothing can spin a real positive in the face of multiple US casualties.

Here’s the really bad news: US warships are designed to emit a minimal radar signature in order to evade radar detection. Additionally, a grey colored ship can be difficult to spot under certain weather conditions. They also typically operate with minimal running lights, which can be an issue when close encounters happen. The USS McCain just like the USS Fitzgerald collision two months ago was the far more maneuverable vessel. When the investigation occurs, this will likely be taken into account. An oil tanker is in a difficult situation, especially in a crossing situation. This scenario can get the USS McCain crew into hot water.

With the McCain collision unfolding just two months after the USS Fitzgerald Collision with the MV ACX Crystal, scrutiny needs to be applied to the upper echelons of US Pacific Command. Substandard training may be part of the problem, as one active-duty Navy officer expressed concern to Fox News over the training of young Navy officers aboard ships: “It’s not the same level of training you used to get.”

Incredibly, the McCain collision marks the fourth mishap for U.S. Navy ships in the Pacific since February. Aside from the USS McCain and USS Fitzgerald incidents, the Navy cruiser USS Antietam ran aground dumping over 1,000 gallons of oil in Tokyo Bay in February. In May, another cruiser, USS Lake Champlain, hit a South Korean fishing vessel. At minimum, Trump should seriously consider a change of command for the Pacific Fleet.


Pacific Command: Destroyer Sailing Under its Own Power

By Ryan Pickrell. The USS John McCain sustained damage after colliding with a merchant vessel Monday, according to the U.S. 7th Fleet public affairs office.

The American Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer was involved in a collision with the Alnic MC, an oil tanker several times larger than the U.S. naval vessel, while operating east of Singapore, near the Strait of Malacca. Initial reports indicate that the ship suffered damage to its port side. Search and rescue operations are underway. “Our first priority is determining the safety of the ship and crew. As more information is learned, we will share it,” Admiral John Richardson, chief of naval operations, said on Twitter.

The ship is sailing under its own power back to port while crew members fight flooding in multiple compartments, a possible sign that a decent-sized hole may have been punched in the ship’s hull. The Singaporean navy and coast guard are assisting U.S. naval vessels and aircraft with search and rescue. The extent of the damage is unclear at this time, but the Navy assesses that 10 sailors are missing and five are injured. (Read more from “US Destroyer Sustains Damage in Collision With Massive Oil Tanker” HERE)

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Muslim Issues ‘Jihad’ Threat in U.S. Courtroom

The fact that the U.S. faces an enemy unlike any other, who defies conventional methods of deterrence, was illustrated Wednesday in a federal courtroom in Ohio.

Terrence McNeil, 24, of Akron was standing before U.S. District Judge Dan Polster to receive his sentence on charges he threatened members of the military and their families in the name of the ISIS.

The judge issued a 20-year prison sentence, but McNeil defiantly told Polster it was of no concern to him, Cleveland.com reported.

“Nothing you did today even matters,” McNeil said. “Jihad will continue until the day of judgment. And that’s a promise from Allah.

“It’s not going to change. It’s not going to stop. Neither of them are. My commission of Allah is not going to stop. So this is meaningless. I’ll be rewarded for what I do. You’ll be punished for what you do. I’m fine with that. You’re fine with that.” (Read more from “Muslim Issues ‘Jihad’ Threat in U.S. Courtroom” HERE)

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Illegal ‘Dreamer’ Accused of Raping Woman

A 23-year-old DREAMer in Washington state is accused of brutally raping a 19-year-old woman in her apartment complex’s gym and leaving her with severe facial injuries — including a broken jaw and dangling ear.

The woman ended up stumbling home with missing teeth, a bloody head and wearing only a black tank top, according to court documents obtained by Fox News. She was working out in the gym in Burien, a Seattle suburb, before the June 25 assault and did not know her attacker, police said.

Salvador Diaz-Garcia, an illegal immigrant who was a recipient of Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, is now facing second-degree assault and rape charges in the vicious attack. He also faces child molestation charges for allegedly assaulting a 14-year-old the same day the rape occurred.

His DACA status has been revoked and he now may face possible deportation, officials said. (Read more from “Illegal ‘Dreamer’ Accused of Raping Woman” HERE)

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Disturbing Pelosi Tie to GOP Congressman Shooting

When a Bernie Sanders-loving, leftist gunman shot Rep. Steve Scalise and three others during a GOP baseball practice June 14, the U.S. Capitol Police elite tactical team mistakenly headed to Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s house several miles away, according to an internal investigation by the department.

The scene of the shooting was at Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria, Virginia.

But the Capitol Police team instead headed for Pelosi’s waterfront home on 30th Street in Georgetown, which is 7.2 miles, or a 20-minute drive, north of the baseball stadium.

Now Capitol Police have opened an internal investigation to determine why the officers were directed to Pelosi’s house, reported Bloomberg, which cited “two people familiar with the matter” who requested anonymity “to speak about the sensitive incident.”

“The Alexandria incident continues to be an ongoing investigation. We do not comment on ongoing investigations,” Eva Malecki, a Capitol Police spokesperson, told Bloomberg Monday. (Read more from “Disturbing Pelosi Tie to GOP Congressman Shooting” HERE)

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‘Firing Isn’t Enough’ for Killer Cop Mohamed

A day before submitting her resignation, Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau, in her first public statement on the killing nearly a week ago of an unarmed woman by a Somali refugee cop, called her death “unnecessary” and said it went against the protocol and training given to her officers.

“Justine [Damond] didn’t have to die,” Harteau, the city’s first openly lesbian police chief, said at a press conference Thursday night. Harteau had been hiking in Colorado all week in the aftermath of the shooting . . .

Former Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann said Harteau has to accept a large part of the blame for putting an unqualified officer on the street.

“Finally the female chief of Minneapolis police came out and said Justine Damond should still be alive. She said Mohammad Noor had no reason to shoot Justine,” Bachmann told WND. “He violated police policy and training. Noor refuses to cooperate with investigators. He refuses to give a statement.

“Firing him isn’t enough, the question is whether a grand jury will be impaneled. Manslaughter charges should be considered,” she added. (Read more from “‘Firing Isn’t Enough’ for Killer Cop Mohamed” HERE)

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White House Panel on Voter Fraud Begins Work

A presidential commission to examine voter fraud and the soundness of election systems across the country has a big job ahead as it convenes Wednesday for the first time.

Not only is the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity charged with investigating what to do about voter fraud cases and establishing best practices, it must do so despite meeting with resistance from some state election officials.

The initial meeting, set for 11 a.m. in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, will be livestreamed on WhiteHouse.gov.

One tool at the commission’s disposal is a database from The Heritage Foundation that compiles 1,071 cases of proven instances of voter fraud across the United States, the bulk of them prosecuted since 2000.

Most of those cases, 938, ended in a criminal conviction. Another 43 ended in civil penalties. A judge directed the defendant into a pretrial diversion program in 74 cases, and 16 ended in judicial or official findings.

The cases of proven fraud took place in 47 states, according to the database.

“A big advantage of the database is that it shows all the different ways that fraud can be committed,” commission member Hans von Spakovsky, a senior legal fellow at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal. “It demonstrates, for example, you don’t only have to worry about vote-buying. A lot of cases involved that, but you also have to worry about what are the rules governing absentee ballots, since there are a lot of cases in the database of people casting absentee ballots.”

The Daily Signal is Heritage’s multimedia news organization.

President Donald Trump created the bipartisan commission through an executive order in May. He named Vice President Mike Pence as chairman and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, also a Republican, as co-chairman.

The 12-member commission includes three current or former Democratic officeholders: New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner, Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, and former Arkansas state Rep. David Dunn.

The agenda for the first meeting appears broad, not focused on specific issues of ensuring clean elections.

Trump has complained of 3 million to 5 million fraudulent votes in the 2016 presidential election that lifted Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s vote tally. Critics of the commission, including California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, a Democrat who oversees elections in that state, have said the panel is only trying to prove Trump actually won the popular vote as well as the Electoral College.

But von Spakovsky says that is not the goal.

“The whole purpose of the commission is to take a look at the entire American election process, from the voter registration system, to the casting of ballots, to counting of ballots, to the security—including cybersecurity—that surrounds all of this,” said von Spakovsky, previously both a Justice Department lawyer and member of the Federal Election Commission. “We’re not only trying to look at what problems exist, but also [determine] have people taken advantage of those problems.”

Despite resistance from some states in providing information to the commission, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said he believes most state election data will be obtainable—and without buying it, as political campaigns and private companies do.

“Most of this information is available,” Spicer told The Daily Signal. “All that those companies are doing is buying it from the states. So I don’t think there would be any reason to go to a private vendor. I think we should be able to do this utilizing official resources that exist within a state. “

He added:

Again, I think there’s been some miscommunication on what they’re seeking. The commission has asked that each state provide that information that is public, that they share. And because that varies from state to state, what they’re willing to give out, the commission was illustrative in its letter [to state election officials] in trying to describe what it was looking for. But I think we’re going to move forward very well.

Liberal groups such as the Brennan Center for Justice and the League of Women Voters, which have opposed voter ID laws and other voter integrity measures, sued Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson, a Republican commission member, because she’s providing the information.

Voter ID laws require voters to first show photo identification, such as a driver’s license or a special voter ID card, to demonstrate they are who they say they are and live where they say they do.

“The commission cannot bypass state rules designed to protect sensitive voter information,” said Myrna Pérez, deputy director of the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program, in a public statement. “Lawson might be a member of this panel, but her first duty is to the Hoosiers who trusted her with personal information so that they could participate in fair and free elections in the state. She must proceed carefully and with legally mandated procedures before sharing voter data.”

Pence is the former governor of Indiana, which he also represented in the U.S. House.

The panel likely will push best practices among states, such as voter ID and updating voter registration rolls, said Jason Snead, a legal policy analyst with The Heritage Foundation, who studies voter fraud and helps maintain the think tank’s database on voter fraud.

Snead noted a Pew Research Center study that found 1.8 million dead people were listed as voters, 12 million records with incorrect data, and 2.75 million persons registered in more than one state. (For more from the author of “White House Panel on Voter Fraud Begins Work” please click HERE)

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Pantsuit on Fire: Hillary Haunted by Own (Mis)Conduct

More than eight months after Hillary Clinton’s election loss, her use of a private email server and other conduct during her tenure as U.S. secretary of state continue to haunt her.

A newly released batch of documents obtained by Judicial Watch showcases numerous instances of Clinton Foundation donors receiving favors from the State Department.

In one email exchange, Huma Abedin, Clinton’s former deputy chief of staff in the State Department and longtime aide, negotiated who the next the U.S. ambassador to Barbados would be after Clinton Global Initiative executive Doug Band recommended a candidate to fill the position.

“I know, he’s emailed a few times,” Abedin said in reply to Band’s request. “But she wants to give someone else.”

Another exchange shows Band instructing Abedin to “show love” to Andrew Liveris, CEO of Dow Chemical. (Read more from “Pantsuit on Fire: Hillary Haunted by Own (Mis)Conduct” HERE)

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Lawmaker Makes Physical Threat Against ‘P—Y’ Trump

A Democratic state lawmaker in Maine appears to have threatened President Trump in a Facebook post – calling the president a “p—y’ and saying he plans to make Trump a “half term president.”

“Trump is a half term president, at most, especially if I ever get within 10 feet of that p—y,” wrote Rep. Scott Hamann Tuesday evening.

Hamann, who represents a South Portland district, blasted a Trump supporter in his now-deleted Facebook tirade in which he called the president “anti-American” and an “admitted rapist” who was “installed by the Russians.”

In his vicious attack on the Trump supporter and the president, Hamann wrote (warning: explicit content):

(Read more from “Lawmaker Makes Physical Threat Against ‘P—Y’ Trump” HERE)

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U.S. Army Mandates That Soldiers With Penises Who Identify as Women Must Shower With Women; ‘Mattis Is a Coward’

Female soldiers must give “dignity and respect” to transsexual men who join them in their shared shower rooms, according to training manuals leaked by soldiers in a mandatory class.

But this “dignity and respect” is a one-way street, according to the training slides, which were developed by officials working for former President Barack Obama. “Transgender Soldiers are not required or expected to modify or adjust their behavior based on the fact that they do not ‘match’ other Soldiers,” according to the slides, which were first leaked by TheFederalist.com:

The insistence that women remain mute when a man enters their shower room “shows a lack of respect for the vast majority of service members [because] no consideration is given to their feeling about this circumstances,” said Peter Sprigg, senior policy studies expert at the Family Research Council in Washington.

Female soldiers in showers are supposed to ignore visible biology and “act as if nothing has happened when some male … is all of a sudden in the shower room with them,” said Austen Ruse, president of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute. “This is a flat-out humiliation of women. … Females will have their dignity and respect violated [and] they are being told this does not matter even a little bit,” he added.

Female soldiers will not even be allowed to cover themselves because it could signal a lack of “respect” for the transsexual man in the shower, Ruse said. (Read more from “U.S. Army Mandates That Soldiers With Penises Who Identify as Women Must Shower With Women; ‘Mattis Is a Coward'” HERE)

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Transgender-Gang Feud Leaves Teen Dead

The weekend fatal shooting of a teen at an apartment complex near downtown Athens was the culmination of a feud between two transgender groups, Athens-Clarke County police confirmed Wednesday.

Rayquann Deonte Jernigan, 17, who was known to friends by the chosen name of Ava Le’Ray Barrin, was killed Sunday morning by a single gunshot fired by 21-year-old Jalen Breon Brown in the parking lot of Riverview Apartments on College Avenue, police said.

Neither lived in the complex and both were there to visit friends who did live there when the deadly confrontation occurred, said Capt. Jerry Saulters, commanding officer of the Athens-Clarke County police Criminal Investigations Division. (Read more from “Transgender-Gang Feud Leaves Teen Dead” HERE)

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