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A berry-berry ballistic missile

By Frank Salvato
web posted August 8, 2005

In the line of disturbing issues, another has surfaced that, when combined with the ignorance of the ideologically tunnel-visioned in our society, should chill the thinking American public to the bone. This volatile combination could set the stage for a test of our national resolve the likes of which we as Americans have seldom seen. This test could very well rival the struggles of our revolutionary Forefathers and require the iron will of this, our country's greatest generation.

Russian and Chinese leaders have agreed to hold joint military exercises later this month. The two governments plan to mobilize more than 10,000 troops in two cities on their respective Eastern coasts for the maneuvers. US intelligence and military analysts believe they will be training with a cache of state of the art weapons which, when used in concert, would pose a formidable threat to the delicate balance of power on the Asian Continent.

That these two cold war adversaries are embracing each other and sharing their military strategies and weapons technology should be an alarming development. Russia, indignant over President Bush's push for democratic change in that country and its former provinces and China's posturing over the issue of an independent Taiwan makes their "partnership" a matter of great concern for the United States.

So too should we be disturbed by the fact that China has erased a 20-year technological edge once held by the US in the area of military technology. Recent advances in China's military capabilities including new and improved air, sea, missile and outer space systems and the deployment of a new class of nuclear submarine equipped with an AGEIS-styled weapons command system have been documented in the Pentagon's annual report to Congress on the military power of China.

If that weren't enough to have you asking your doctor for a prescription for a non-existent wonder-drug mix of Zantac and Xanax, let's add to this dark and unsettling mix of reality the very real threat of a nuclear strike by a terrorist entity.

Reports from multiple intelligence sources describe an elevated volume of "chatter" among terrorist operatives regarding August 6th and the "American Hiroshima." The "American Hiroshima" is Osama bin Laden's decade-old plan for a terrorist nuclear attack on American soil. Although no year is ever mentioned in this chatter the fact that this year is the 60th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima should be of significance. With the admission by the Russian government that several of its Cold War Era "suitcase nukes" have gone missing this scenario is of legitimate concern.

So, with all of these legitimate threats facing our nation – and the almost complete access to information on each of the threats posed available to the public – one would think that the ignorance of the 1960s head-in-the-sand anti-war mentality would be considered exclusive to that of the village idiot.

Enter Ben Cohen, co-founder of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream.

Cohen has climbed aboard his "Oreo-mobile" and is parading around the country spotlighting what he calls "mixed-up federal spending priorities."

"Canceling weapons systems designed to fight the collapsed Soviet Union – weapons that have no role in fighting terrorists – is not being weak on defense," said Cohen. "It is rebuilding our schools, providing health care for our kids, training our workforce for decent jobs, reducing our dependence on foreign oil, and creating a decent quality of life for all of us."

Cohen is promoting the idea of taking $35 billion dollars from the Pentagon's budget – $35 billion he says is currently "wasted on obsolete Cold War weapons" – and spending it on social programs, many of which are already fully funded and some of which could be considered pork barrel programs. It would seem that Cohen is illustrating this "rob Peter to pay Paul" strategy by exploiting cookies and the good reputation of Oreos.

The fact that it wasn't even a year ago that Cohen and his crowd were screaming that the Pentagon hadn't adequately outfitted our military's Humvees with enough armor should be enough to understand that the Pentagon budget is stretched about as far as it can go. If there were $35 billion available in the defense budget for discretionary spending the issues of military pay, base closings, and benefits for military families wouldn't be issues. But there isn't and they are.

We the People have to sober up from the ideological stupor that was the mentality of the "everything is beautiful in its own way" 1960s. It has been poisoning our collective thought process for over 40 years. Everything is not beautiful; in fact some things that our country faces are downright frightening.

Make no mistake, if an al-Qaida terrorist could detonate a nuclear bomb in the heart of Chicago during a workday rush hour they would…in a heartbeat. If Russia or China thought for a moment that the US was vulnerable they wouldn't hesitate to capitalize on our weakness. These are facts that have been proven over and over, again and again.

It would seem that terrorism, left to the interpretation of liberals, is explained away by a group hug that didn't happen. To think otherwise would be to expose one's ignorance to the facts.

Besides, why should the American people listen to a 60's throw-back whose only success was born of being so stoned that he stumbled across a good ice cream recipe while trying to satisfy "the munchies?"

Oh, right. He's got cookies.

Frank Salvato is the managing editor for TheRant.us. He serves at the Executive Director of the Basics Project, a non-profit, non-partisan, socio-political education project. His pieces are regularly featured in Townhall.com. He has appeared on The O'Reilly Factor and numerous radio shows. His pieces have been recognized by the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention and are periodically featured in The Washington Times as well as other national and international publications. He can be contacted at oped@therant.us Copyright © 2005 Frank Salvato

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