sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

End of a Coot

The Ilyushin 20 (Il-20) is a military version of the Il-18 passenger airplane, with electronic equipment and an array of external antennae. The platform has been used by the Russian Air Force as flying command post for the past forty-five years, with upgrades coming incrementally over that time. This version (right) is sometimes unofficially referred to as Il-20 or Coot-A NATO designation. The Il-38 Russian maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine was also developed from the Il-18.

As currently configured for operations in Syria, the Il-20 is equipped with a wide range of antennas, infrared and optical sensors. The aircraft's SLAR (Side-Looking Airborne Radar) and the plane's satellite link allows the Russian military to monitor Syrian skies in real time.” 

On 17 September, a Russian military Il-20 aircraft with 14 service members on board was lost during an attack by Israeli jets on targets in Latakia Province, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.

Air traffic controllers at the Hmeimim Air Base “lost contact” with the aircraft on Monday evening, during the Israeli attack. The plane was 35 kilometers off the coast of Syria when it vanished.
The statement said, "The trace of the Il-20 on flight control radars disappeared during an attack by four Israeli F-16 jets on Syrian facilities in Latakia province." 
"At the same time Russian air control radar systems detected rocket launches from the French frigate Auvergne which was located in that region."
The Israelis had no comment about the attacks in Latakia. A US source told the press that the Syrians downed the Russian aircraft as they attempted to shoot down the Israeli aircraft and the alleged French missiles.

One may deduce that the Israelis had better countermeasures to defeat the Russian-made Syrian missiles than the Russians did. Sort of embarrassing for the Russian surveillance aircraft, now resting on the bottom of the Mediterranean, waiting for a US Submarine to pick through the wreckage and bring the interesting parts back for analysis.

Thoughts on Satan's Vatican

Some say it's Harvard, but the problem is larger than just that one school and it's larger than the Ivy League. Much has been written on the subject and I'll be brief in this polemic. It starts with the admissions office and the soft con required to get through the doors. While it's true that objective and subjective measures are required to discriminate between ten thousand applicants to get it whittled down to a hundred chairs, it's often a litmus test to see whose parents have the most stroke.
Harvard and its affiliates will inflict some kind of damage (academic, emotional, occasionally physical) on everyone who lingers there. It is a place where everyone is out to get everyone else. In a place where no one can be the best at everything, everyone takes any chance they can get to measure up to their peers. It is a mob of ruthless young overachievers with a taste for blood.
Is it all about large brains?
At Harvard, both faculty and student body believe that each of them is a "heroic being," that their individual happiness is a moral absolute, that their own reason is ironclad and incorruptible. Just look at what four years of that does to a person. Half of the graduating class will end up at Wall Street investment banks, where a soul is an incumbrance that will only get you into trouble.

It explains why so many politicians find their origins at Harvard or Yale as did Mark Zuckerberg and Ted Kaczynski (the Unabomber). And maybe they're just so much smarter than the rest of us that we can't really imagine what it's like. I've rubbed shoulders with these folks in my life. Most of them lack a basic humanity as if it was scourged from them...but not all. In order to appear to be well rounded, some take a sabbatical (funded by dad's cash) where they work one summer building homes for Habitat for Humanity, or backpack through Malaysia. These adventures stand alone as their 'journeys of self discovery' that a lot of them fall back on when accused of being a bloodthirsty, heartless, and soulless creatures. Many these days self-identify as "queer", which suggests that they may not reproduce (individually) to spread their DNA further - like a whale beaching itself instinctively when it's sick.

I suggest that when a budding politician touts their Ivy League credentials, that you vote for the other person.