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Jeff Quinton's Weblog on War, Politics and Life in 21st Century America.

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About Me:

Here is some biographical data for anyone who might be interested.

Born: 1973 in Greenwood, South Carolina.
Marital Status: Single
Parents' occupations: Teacher (mother), Police officer (father)
Education:
1992 Honors Graduate; Laurens District H.S.; Laurens, South Carolina
1992-1993 Edmund Walsh School of Foreign Service; Georgetown University; Washington, District of Columbia.
1994-1995 Presbyterian College; Clinton, South Carolina
Honors & Awards: Eagle Scout, Army Achievement Medal, Reserve Component Achievement Medal
Media Experience:
1990-1991 Yearbook Editor; Laurens District H.S.; Laurens, South Carolina.
1994-1996 Reporter & Political Analyst; WLMA Radio; Greenwood, South Carolina.
1995 Student Publications School; The Leadership Institute
1998 Reporter; The Andy Thomas Show; Columbia, South Carolina
1998-2002 Publisher; PalmettoJournal.com; Columbia, South Carolina
2001 Video Production & Post-Production; Citadel Project, South Carolina Army National Guard; Eastover, South Carolina
Government Experience
State Employee:
1998- 2000 Web Developer; Office of the Adjutant General, Columbia, South Carolina
2000-2001 Web Developer; Office of The Attorney General; Columbia, South Carolina
Federal Employee:
2001 Video Production & Post-Production Assistant; South Carolina Army National Guard; Eastover, South Carolina
2001-2002 Computer Specialist; South Carolina Army National Guard; Columbia, South Carolina
Military Experience:
1996-2003 Intelligence Analyst, South Carolina Army National Guard
Political Experience:
1990-1992 Chairman, Laurens County Teen Age Republicans
1991-1992 Upstate Political Director, South Carolina Teen Age Republicans
1992 Vice Chairman, Georgetown Students for Bush/Quayle
1992-1993 Member, Georgetown University College Republicans
1993 Intern; Accuracy in Academia; Washington, District of Columbia
1994 Press Liaison, Allgood for Congress
1994 Campaign Manager, Moore for South Carolina House
1994-1995 Member, Presbyterian College College Republicans
1994-1996 First Vice Chairman, Laurens County Republican Party
1995 State Committeeman, South Carolina College Republicans
1995 Research and Intelligence Director; Workman for Mayor
1995 Field Representative; Sullivan for South Carolina Senate


posted by Jeff Quinton at 17:36


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"Axis of Evil" Appellation Proven Not to be a Misnomer: President George W. Bush's 2002 State of the Union speech included the designation of the Republic of Iraq, the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea as "an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world."

Bush's given reason at the time for this designation was the development of weapons of mass destruction by these three countries. This appellation was scoffed at by many liberals (including some in the press), but recent events have shown that all three of these countries continue to develop weapons that are nuclear, biological or chemical in nature.

Last week, the U.S. government expressed "grave concerns" over a report that Iran, a 1968 signatory to the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty, is on the brink of processing enriched uranium. Iran claims that these developments are peaceful and relate solely to the development of nuclear energy for civilian power needs.

Iran announced last week that they would begin mining uranium ore near the city of Yazd in Central Iran despite agreements in place with the government of Russia to provide all of the uranium needed for the Bushehr reactor prompted criticism from the U.S. Department of State. The ore would be processed in the cities Isfahan and Kashan. President Khatami of Iran seemed to indicate that the Iranians were planning on stockpiling spent fuel from the Bushehr reactor in the future. The Bushehr reactor was constructed by Russia and should be coming on-line no later than summer of 2004.

Iran's nuclear ambitions started under the regime of Shah Reza Pahlavi who initiated construction on two reactors at Bushehr and planned for up to twenty reactors. Nuclear construction appeared to come to a halt following the Islamic Revolution of 1979 and the Bushehr facility was bombed by Iraq during the Iran-Iraq War. Current plans call for fifteen power reactors and two research reactors. Iran has not been cited for any violations of international treaties in their current effort to develop nuclear reactors; however analysis indicates that Iranian officials plan to use their development of nuclear power as a cover for weapons development.

Iran also manufactures chemical weapons that include blister, blood and choking agents. Since the Iran-Iraq War, they have put a premium on researching nerve agents after the usage of VX by the Iraqis in that conflict. Iran is believed to be developing basic biological warfare agents as well. Iran's ballistic missile program is based on Soviet-bloc technology similar to SCUD-B missiles as well as North Korean missiles including the No-dong-1 and the Taep'o-dong-1 and 2.

North Korean radio has proclaimed as late as today that the DPRK would triumph in a nuclear conflict with the United States. The DPRK has not admitted or denied possessing nuclear weapons. However, U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld claims that the North Koreans may already possess one or two nuclear weapons and could have enough plutonium to make six or eight more within months.

The most recent chapter in this saga started in October when American officials said that the DPRK had admitted the existence of a covert nuclear development program. The International Atomic Energy Agency has referred this issue to the United Nations Security Council.

North Korea has mining operations in place with up to four million tons of high-grade uranium in the ground. The Soviets assisted them in establishing their Yongbyon research facility in the Sixties. They have continued their research at Yongbyon since then and an Agreed Framework was signed between the US and the DPRK in Geneva in 1994 in which the North Koreans agreed to freeze its nuclear program and work to strengthen the international regime of non-proliferation, among other things. North Korea’s admission in October put them in violation of this framework.

North Korea has researched biological warfare agents including anthrax, cholera, bubonic plague and yellow fever since the Sixties. Their extensive production facilities also include both persistent and non-persistent chemical agents. Their chemical and biological stockpiles may include as much as 5,000 tons of material. The DPRK has an extensive ballistic missile program and recent revelations indicate that they may be able to hit the West Coast of the US with ballistic missiles.

A CIA report in October of 2002 assessed Iraq’s Weapons of Mass Destruction programs. According to the report, Iraq has been misusing the proceeds of oil sales that were allowed so that they could buy food and medicine for the people of Iraq. These proceeds have instead been used to fund Iraq’s development of weapons of mass destruction. Iraq has also rebuilt facilities that were destroyed in Operation Desert Fox in 1998 as well as developing missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles that exceed the range set by the UN. The only thing stopping Saddam Hussein from developing nuclear weapons is the lack of weapons-grade fissile material, which could be obtained from other countries.

Much of the evidence in the October report was also cited in recent weeks by Secretary of State Colin Powell in his speech to the UN Security Council. Included in this evidence is the “aggressive attempts” to obtain high-strength aluminum tubes as well as evidence that Iraq has resumed production of mustard gas, sarin, cyclosarin and VX. The other evidence cited in that report is mirrored in Powell’s speech.

In recent weeks and months, it would seem that both Iran and North Korea have attempted to capitalize on what they perceived to be a preoccupation with Iraq by the U.S. and her allies to further their special weapons projects and to test the waters of international opinion regarding further development. Iran’s plans and North Korea’s saber-rattling both show that their intentions are less than honorable.

The evidence presented over the past months and years indicate that all 3 nations of President Bush’s “Axis of Evil” deserve to be included in that group.


posted by Jeff Quinton at 15:43


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This Just In: Palmetto Journal is no longer owned by me. The domain registration change is still pending but I have not controlled the content of the site since early June of 2002. The terms of the sale agreement do not allow me to divulge any other details.


posted by Jeff Quinton at 06:41