The Cepia Club Blog

The Cepia Club Blog: The Cepia Club believes individual awareness and activism can lead to a peaceful and prosperous world. This blog contains the pertinent literature, both creative and non-fiction, produced by the Cepiaclub Director and its associates.

Friday, December 28, 2007

The Future of US Security and National Interest in the Persian Gulf: From Here Forward

Like all futile military action, the half-measures of political policy by Congress (on both sides) and the Administration, those responsible for US grand strategy in the Iraq war, have all failed to understand the real basis of any strategy: The use of peaceful power and force to shape a decisive political outcome in conflict. This has been the problem since the authorization for war in Iraq in October 2002, and even earlier when a bi-partisan Congress gave the Clinton Administration a clear mandate for regime change in Iraq.
US politicians (in both parties) have in history proven poor strategist. The US military, from the statements they made then, saw the Iraq war and occupation becoming a debacle as early in 2002. Their advice was ignored. The politicians served their own interests and had their reasons for, first, supporting a poorly conceived political policy in the war, and then, second, not enforcing accountability on themselves or others responsible for the failures. Partisan politicians serve special interests. They have not shown foresight and wisdom in public on Iraq at all since 1991's Gulf War. Can America survive as a strong nation in such a complex world created by policy failure? Will either the fear and greed of the leadership class in America destroy security and prosperity because of Iraq, and cause more problems through a short-sighted selfish interest?
It is time the United States confronts some of the realities it faces in the 21st Century. Only then can it develop national strategies for long-term solutions. At the present time, the Iraq war and its post-US occupation need to be addressed. More failure in any respect from here forward in the Middle East can simply overwhelm the US national interests. Framing this discussion in the belief that the limited surge strategy of 2007 will succeed, long-term post-war planning is necessary now. If not, the ideas presented here can be used to evaluate likely courses of action. Without considering some these possibilities, voters in the 2008 elections may empower politicians for even more disastrous policies.
A residual force, if the limited surge DOES indeed succeed, will still be needed in the Persian Gulf Theater of Operations. This could include an 10-15,000 man Army air-ground divisional combat team or Marine Air Ground Task Force that could rotate into Kuwait from other US commands (European, Northern or Pacific Commands) on temporary 5-6 month deployments. This rotating force need not be permanently based in Iraq, hence meeting public, Congressional, and international pressure to avoid a “permanent” presence in Iraq. The rotating units in 6-month deployment will probably include training programs within Iraq or rapid, and very brief rapid reinforcements of Iraq’s government. An eight to twelve month Special Operating Forces rotation and a permanent covert civilian intelligence presence inside Iraq is politically possible and make would be wise.
Based “off-shore” of Iraq, using sea-basing and rapid reinforcement, US Navy/Marine Expeditionary Strike Groups and Amphibious Ready Groups, and a 30,000 troop joint task force in high readiness under US Central Command could remain inside and outside of the Persian Gulf. Such a presence necessity as long as oil is necessary for the US economy. This task force, on a level at or near the current US military commitment in Korea and Japan, can be based in and operate from the island nation of Bahrain, on the peninsula state of Qatar, and on the territory of Oman outside the mouth of the Gulf in Oman. This military presence would act as strategic deterrence and rapid intervention under new security arrangements. Such a US commitment is feasible, as the large US European Command within NATO becomes less necessary. Furthermore it is the only viable linchpin for stabilizing the Persian Gulf, preventing regional conflict, and serving the overall US national interests for the next 20-30 years, until oil is no longer needed.
As a peace enforcement group, the US military presence can only be done within a regional security organization of sovereign nation-states in and around the Persian Gulf. The US military presence needs to be the balancer of power and interests.
A long-term stable peace in the Persian Gulf needs to become a proposition of “keeping the Americans in, the Iranians down,” and the Chinese (and the Russians) from dominating the politics of war and peace in the Indian Ocean Area.
A new security system needs to evolve with other nations willing to form a collective defense organization with the US and the local nation-states. The security strategy envisioned here includes a NATO-like model of political and military integration of policy BUT with an Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe form of cooperation between friends, allies, enemies and competitors. All countries within the Indian Ocean Area (including Iran, Pakistan and India) need to be invited to join this Indian Oceans Area security system.
In addition, all other Great Powers with economic interests should be invited to join, including China, Japan, Russia, France and Great Britain, Australia, and Brazil. With each country participating in some way in the political dialogue, economic development, social and cultural building, and in a collective defense system, aggressors and illegitimate organizations (al Qaeda) bent on the destruction of the civil order and prosperity of the world can be dealt with jointly. After all, international security, or the “common safety” of the world, is the responsibility of everyone to protect the natural rights of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness of everyone else, as well as their own. Dealing with the Persian Gulf first through a slow evolution toward balancing common interests and needs, with human liberty as the ultimate goal, is the only way civilization can prevent more conflict throughout the Indian Ocean Area until oil is no longer a relevant concern of civilization. This is the world’s problem. It requires an international solution.

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Club Christmas Party A Success; Happy Holidays from The Cepia Club LLC

Plagued by foul weather, The Cepia Club LLC’s first major event Clubhouse was nonetheless a good success. Moving into the Clubhouse three weeks previously, the Club hosted Holy Creations LLC’s “Christmas in the Holy Land.” Displaying hand-carved olive-wood ornaments and his special line of extra virgin olive oils, all produced in the occupied territories of Palestine, Abe Saleh., Holy Creations’ ( )owner gave a unique and wonderful feature to the Club’s first ever Christmas/Holiday party.

As far as Abe’s sales in the “The Groovy Liberty Store,” enough consigned items were sold to pay the bills for the day. Club friends and visitors who showed up had a great time eating homemade chili and desserts, and the specialty breads, olive oils, and homemade humus provided by Abe. Yet, the weather of icy-sleety Saturday morning snow was a major factor mentioned in the regrets received during the day. But even people, including from the Centuria business community, nevertheless managed to wait out the road conditions and make it in time for the feasting. Later in the day, when the late-comers arrived, the awareness and activism came about naturally on the political and economic condition of Palestinians during this Christmas (17-20% of Palestinians are Christians).

It was a friendly, open-minded dialogue between friends new and old, The mention of how Palestinian and Israeli Jews, Muslims and Christians get along and engage in fellowship in a lot places in the common Holy Land of all our fathers, immensely shocking to some at the dinner table. Abe (one of those “unmentioned” Palestinian Christians) had revealed to all us that during a visit to Israel and the Palestinian West Bank two months ago, Hebrews and Arabs of all three faiths AT THE GRASS ROOTS COMMUNITY LEVEL get along, socialize, attend one another’s church, synagogue and mosque, and they engage in commerce in peace. The average people who live together in the Holy Land, on both sides of Abraham’s descendants, ARE TIRED OF THE POLITICS and wish to free themselves from US media-manipulated and politcally-motivated distortions and lies trying to keep them divided from peace.

As the Club’s common message goes, underneath the economic, social and cultural self-serving needs of the rich and the politicians everywhere, it is the people themselves who connect “for peace and unity via free-minds and free-markets.” There is hope for the world, in a lot ways, and more than just for long-elusive “peace” in the Holy Land between Israel and the Arabs. If people all over, but particularly here in the United States, could get over their ignorance and apathy, become more willfully informed of “reality,” and willingly active in this country, many of the problems that infect our own country and the world might not altogehter disappear, but the Earth could be a better place despite our selfish, fearful natures.

On another, more business note, Abe Saleh’s Holy Creations LLC and The Cepia Club LLC had other, greater successes today. The public and media relations “guerrilla marketing” efforts of the Club brought some attention to the independent business endeavors. Stemming from the prime ethic of the Club, “to help others in order to help ourselves” (Commitment Four listed on ), the largest newspaper in the area printed an announcement for our Christmas in the Holy Land party. People noticed it on our sites, perhaps heard about it someway, and then a reporter from the second largest paper in the area showed up to take pictures and ask questions for her paper.

Finally, The Cepia Club LLC exists for one reason: To Connect People for Peace and Unity via Free-minds and Free-markets. We work for a “community ending public ignorance and apathy.” To achieve the goal of promoting and encouraging awareness and activism, foster the free-market of ideas and commerce. We earn our own way; to raise revenue to support ourselves and grow the influence of our Post-Historical enterprise based on all our Four Commitments. Success depends on our implied promise: That we shall try at all costs to speak and act honestly and realistically as we see it, diplomatically if necessary, but in order to serve those who do now and might someday might believe that a better way can be found for positive peaceful change. We are not perfect; we can only aspire to succeed. But with our peers walking beside us, we willingly serve the common good. Together, we might create a more sovereign, prosperous, and safe place to live.

Peace on Earth; Good Will Toward All.

Merry Christmas (my own free-will celebration),


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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Clubhouse Now Open

As some of you have heard, the reorganized The Cepia Club LLC has moved into a new “Clubhouse." (Join for details on location, hours, contact info, etc.)

We have the beginnings of a consignment store to support the dreaded “fixed expenses,” my new most un-favorite words. Right now I’m selling off some of my used and good condition-used “dukedom’s” prized library (see “The Tempest” by Billy Shkspr) of some good classics, sci-fi and fantasy, obscure and out of print political philosophy, and “important” history. Holy Creations is selling their extra virgin and organic olive oil and olive wood hand carved items from the Holy Land. They offer these all in order to encourage peace via free-market commerce between Israel and Palestine, mostly by giving farmers, coops, craft and other entrepreneur’s in the occupied and impoverished territories JOBS and a better life. Soon, some bands plan on bringing cds, shirts, stickers, etc. And finally, local writer’s (and hopefully other artists) will have their publications for sale. Other consignment articles of a “Club spirit” might also be added.

The second part of the store is a multi-media center, for both publishing and PiK. Media, the Club’s broadcasting enterprise. We are revamping the newsletter into a grass roots awareness and activism policy journal–for global e-distribution, and we shall focus improving our own “Firing Line”-type free-minds and free-markets web television show, Freedom Affairs. As far as the other broadcasting, including Club Rebelvision and Club Radio Free World, the Club invites people tell us their ideas that we might consider executive producing, financing, or broadcasting. [In the meantime, we are finishing extra filming for the “Writing in Amery, USA” documentary film].

Most of all, the Clubhouse is a Clubhouse: A good place to come and hang out, meet people, engage in meaningful, intelligent dialogue with other open-minded people. I have loaned some of my archive political and current events periodicals and reference books so that people can find out WHAT THE HECK IS GOING WRONG WITH THE WORLD. I hope people use them. We are starting to market an Associated Profile Program (for sale, trade or barter) for people out to make a serious enterprise, but for all of our grass-roots groove friends who want to share a community fellowship atmosphere, we also believe in mutual cooperation for the benefit of everyone. In other words, there is no requirement to use the hang-out space except peace, tolerance, honesty, and good-will toward everyone else.

So, come on in and check us out. The coffee is usually hot, loitering with good intent is welcome, and no one is obligated to buy a damn thing!! (May be you will, but who knows?)

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Saturday, December 01, 2007

US Troops to Stay "Permanently" in Iraq

The independent news source Truthout has reported on a President Bush and Prime Minister Maliki agreement to “permanently” station US troops in Iraq. Find it here at: Here is some analysis:

The "permanent" aspect of US bases in Iraq is easily circumvented. One "deceptive" way to fool the US Congress and the 2008 Defense Appropriation (the supplemental law from Nov.) and the 2008 Defense Authorization (required by the Constitution) acts is to rotate units. For example, V Corps is permanentely based in Europe. One division or an air group from EUCOM, or an increased air-borne & air mobile capacity, could rotate to Iraq every five months, on a scheduled basis for things like "readiness training." With 4 combat brigades now the norm in US force structure for a division, which also has a fifth organic support element, the units could swap personnel o n, using the same equipment, quarterly, so that the units would overlap at the beginning and end of a "4 month deployment." More likely, would be a larger military base US force structure in Kuwait or off-shore, doing effectively "patrols" into Iraq. Nothing permanent. US strategy has emphasized a naval aspect called Sea Base (from the Sea Power 21 US Navy transformation guideline from 2002-2003). As far as "permanent" equipment, the bases, as the article points out, would be owned by the Iraq gov't, manned by contractors, with the heavy gear and vehicles being switched out with pre-positioning ships and stocks elsewhere in the Gulf and/or Indian Ocean (although IO-based maritime pre-positioning needs might require this equipment to be "strategic" for Indian Ocean Area/Central and Pacific Command contingencies.

While the number of US troops estimated in the article is 50,000, I find this an entirely too high a number for permanent stationing. The bulk of the required units and specialties- -the personnel flying in separately from heavy units like tanks, trucks, and logistics, which must travel by ship--would most likely be "based" in Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Oman.

So, to "funge" the law is entirely practical in this case. The agreement would be against the spirit for now, but a conservative Supreme Court would perhaps decide with President Bush or a subsequent Republican administration. But defense policy must be reviewed, lapsed, and renewed every 2-years, per Article I, Sec. 8 of the US Constitution. Pending new elections and a bipartisan change in voting coalitions, the laws found in the Appropriation Act and expected to be approved in the Authorization bill can be changed.

As an aside, does it really matter that Iraq's Governing Council has any say in this at all, or any power to enforce its own constitution. Can we ever again enforce our own?

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