Science and nature

Take a virtual ride in a U-2 spy plane

I remember learning about the U–2 spy plane when I was a child. At the time, it seemed like a redundant plane, superseded by newer surveillance planes. It seems that perception was very wrong. One big takeaway from this great video from CBS News is that the U–2 is a very relevant, effective and modern surveillance platform.

Mostly this is just very cool to see as a military jet geek (at least as a child and teenager). This was one of the passions I shared with my late Dad.

Another great perspective on the U–2 spy plane comes from the awesome photographer, Christopher Michel, who flew this plane in an earlier career. He published photos of his experiences (at least, what he could share) and the views are breathtaking.

U-2 High Flight

U-2 High Flight

Photos by Christopher Michel from his album titled “U–2: At the Edge of Space”, licensed CC BY 2.0

Events and Life Politics and government Travel and places

Appeasement didn’t work with Hitler, why should it work with Iran?

The information about the framework agreement concluded between a US-led collection of major powers and Iran doesn’t point to the best deal US President Obama could achieve. All he has managed to do is repeat a tragic historical mistake roughly 78 years after British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement policy failed to avert the Second World War and the devastation it brought.

As David Horovitz put it in his article on Times of Israel titled “The unfolding farce of Obama’s deal with Iran“:

What is becoming increasingly plain is the extent to which the Obama team and their colleagues were played for fools by the Iranians in the talks themselves.

Iran was dragged to the negotiating table by the accumulated impact of a painstakingly constructed sanctions regime. It was allowed to leave the table with much of its nuclear weapons program intact, and with the promise of those sanctions being removed.

Unsurprisingly, Iran was not required to acknowledge its nuclear weaponization efforts to date. Unsurprisingly, it was not required to halt its missile development program. Unsurprisingly, sanctions removal was not conditioned on its abandonment of terrorism, a halt to its financing and arming of Hezbollah, Hamas and other Islamic extremist groups, or an end to its relentless incitement against Israel. Nobody who had followed the Obama administration’s abject handling of the negotiations prior to Lausanne had expected anything in these areas.

Obama hasn’t averted a nuclear Iran, he practically guaranteed it (short of an intervention) and he will probably force Israel’s hand in the months and years to come. If Iran develops nuclear weapons the world will become an even more dangerous place for everyone, not just us Israelis.

Good job, President Obama. Good thing you don’t need to run for re-election.

Image credit: The BADGER explosion on April 18, 1953, as part of Operation Upshot-Knothole, at the Nevada Test Site.



What does it take to protect Mitt Romney?

Interesting peek into what it takes to protect a Presidential candidate in the United States! I love this Secret Service stuff.