The Plaid Avenger

Plaidcast  |  The Americas

Shields v. Rockets: a New 21st Century Arms Race is On!

I’m making the call: a brand new 21st century arms race is on! The US and Russia are returning to their old Cold War mentalities by escalating competing defensive and offensive capabilities.  Announced earlier this week, the US/NATO missile defense shield is now operable in Europe, which pisses off the Ruskies, who in turn tested a new type of faster sleeker missile to be able to penetrate the shield. Team West is planning massive increases in their missile shield development, and Russia promises massive increases in their offensive capabilities to render the shield useless. Yay! Massive arms spending between powers that have virtually no chance of actually ever attacking each other! A total win for defense industries everywhere! Sorry taxpayers, you will have to flip the bill for the fun!

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NATO Summit: Missile shield risks Russian wrath

Keywords: US, Russia, Europe, NATO, missile defense shield, SM-3, rocket, radar, satellites, X-band, Turkey, AEGIS, warship, Patriot missile, ICBM, Kura, Kamchatka, Iskander, Belarus, Kaliningrad, Black Sea

Russia Tilts East by Double-Dissing the West!

Vladimir Putin is back in the saddle of the Russian presidency, and one of his first moves involved a double-diss throw down on the US! He refused to attend the big G-8 Summit being hosted in the US! What is up with that? Plenty my friends, and it’s not all about the US either. Putin’s moves reflect a tilt way from the Team West dominated G-8 and NATO groups, and towards grander relationships with Asia and specifically China. Learn all the details of the double-diss here and the deeper meaning behind them.

Related Stories:
Vladimir Putin skips G8 summit, sends Medvedev
Putin flexes muscle in shunning US-hosted G8 talks
US nuke upgrade to trigger new arms race with Russia?

Keywords: Russia, US, Putin, Medvedev, Obama, G-8, NATO, missile defense shield, SCO, Eurasian Union, China, geopolitical, Chicago, diss

Sayonara to Okinawa!

9000 US Marines are about to say “so long!” to Okinawa, Japan…from a much-contested US military base that has been a source of friction between these two allies for decades. In this podcast, the Professor sets the Okinawa stage of background for this saga, and more importantly discusses where these 9000 US Marines are likely to be going to—which is signaling a significant shift in priorities for the US military here in the 21st century. So, goodbye Japan, and hello US allies in the South China Sea!

Keywords: Okinawa, Japan, US, military, Marines, Futenma, airbase, Pacific, Asia, Guam, Hawaii, South Korea, South China Sea, Australia, Philippines, WW2, China, Indonesia, Vietnam

US Screws Self at Summit of Americas

The 6th Summit of the Americas just wrapped up in Cartagena, Colombia…and it could not have been more of a debacle for the United States! President Obama went to this grand meeting of the leaders of all the countries of the Americas (minus Cuba!) in order to rebuild bridges and ties after decades of US apathy towards Latin America. He failed. The status of Cuba, the miserable Drug War in the Americas, and even a US Secret Service scandal involving hookers has perhaps widened the gap between the US and the rest of the hemisphere.  No bueno!!!

Keywords: Summit of Americas, US, Latin America, OAS, Organization of American States, Drug War, Cuba, legalization, decriminalization, embargo, Secret Service, Colombia

Mexico is Making the Major Leagues!

What do an Indian businessman, the world’s richest man, and Will Ferrell all have in common? MEXICO man! Forget that outdated stereotype in your brain about Mexico being a drug-infested, backwater underbelly of the US….this place has tremendous promise for the immediate future, and a whole variety of things are happening there right now that underscores its growing importance in the world. In this “in the filed” report from the SxSW conference in Austin, Texas, the Professor points out how business, technology, and even popular culture in Mexico are showing its potential as a powerhouse player in the Americas and the world, despite drug war problems and negative imagery ingrained in the average American’s mind about our neighbors to the south. Vamanos! Let’s learn!

Keywords: Mexico, Will Ferrell, Carlos Slim, business, culture, Spanish, US, cartel wars, economy

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Issue 2: Battle For Burma

Well, the battle for the heart and soul of this country is on, but no one outside Burma seems to be able to do a damn thing about it! Why not?

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