The 9/17/21 dispatch.

There’s been almost too much news this week to share it all (Regular readers know I prefer short posts).

I won’t even post any additional news about the General Milley and Trump/China situation. It went mainstream as I predicted in my last post. I figure you’ve read enough about it by now and that everyone has made their minds up regarding whether General Milley is a hero or something far worse.

The biggest news other than the Milley mess (hey, that’s not bad alliteration right there; I should be a writer!), involves the US, the UK, and Australia.

David Ignatius, a foreign policy expert for decades, perfectly described the news:

The short-term goal of the Indo-Pacific alliance is to help Australia over the next 18 months prepare to build a nuclear attack submarine, which will be a stealthy, undersea weapons-launching platform at a time when surface vessels are increasingly vulnerable to Chinese anti-ship missiles. An administration official said Australia may build up to a dozen such subs over the next two decades.

The AUKUS initiative should be an antidote to what sometimes seems an American addiction to legacy weapons systems, such as aircraft carriers and fighter jets, that will have diminishing effectiveness against China’s high-tech military. Last week, Gen. John Hyten, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, complained in a session at the Brookings Institution that the Pentagon has been “unbelievably slow” with military modernization.

The UK prime minister gave a good summary of it below, if you a minute or so to hear him.

As a reminder, besides this AUKUS alliance, the U.S. also has the group it calls the “the Quad,” which includes India and Japan, (plus Australia and the United States).

When you combine the countries already mentioned, then throw in other countries such as the Philipines, Thailand, etc, then you see that China truly finds itself facing a quite large alliance, which can stand up to the mammoth Asian bully that it is. (← This is my editorializing, but you know it’s completely true. China is a barbaric regime and we should never forget that.)


Moving to other matters, an interesting story dropped regarding the Taliban. It turns out they used some drone attacks to kill off important leaders of the Afghan resistance that they faced.

You can read the full story below, but it does seem they took out some crucial resistance leaders with these suicide drones when it mattered the most. (And the fear of these attacks had the ground forces quite worried.)


Staying on the topic of Afghanistan for a moment later, there have been a number of increasingly disturbing reports (and evidence) that the last drone strike in Afghanistan hit a target that had nothing to do with terrorists. I tried to mostly ignore these stories for some time, but so many outlets have run this down, that the evidence is pretty overwhelming.

I try to be as pro-military as I can, but this strike appears to have been a terrible mistake. One that is certainly understandable after the death of 13 U.S. service members and more than 170 Afghans just days earlier, and with justified fears of a follow-up suicide attack.

At the link, you can see that The Washington Post had some incredibly detailed reporting on the strike and who all were killed:

If you don’t have a Washington Post subscription, CNN was all over the story, as well:


In other news, on the technology front, drones and robots continue to become more prominent. See more evidence below:


Finally, I wanted to share this video from the Secretary of Defense. Suicides continue to be a serious problem for veterans. (And depression and negative thinking is even up significantly among civilians, following two years of COVID precautions and political vitriol amped up to 100+.)

I thought this short talk by Secretary Austin provided some of the best ideas I’ve seen for preventing self-harm and reducing depression, sadness, and loneliness. Please watch it if you have a moment. And please share the ideas, if you can, with any struggling vets that you know. We’ve already lost too many of them.

At a minimum, reach out to them and say hello. Check in with them, ask them how it’s going, and try to get them to talk some.


That’s it for this post. Stay safe and be kind. As always, please share this post if you enjoyed it.

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And if you haven’t already, please sign up for email notifications. (It’s FREE. Unless you choose to subscribe and support what I’m doing. You can cancel at any time.) Every Tuesday and Friday, I write about conflicts and military matters that are happening throughout the world. Such as what’s happening in Afghanistan or Iraq. How we’re aligning ourselves to counter China’s growing influence. Updates on new military technology that we’re fielding.

I also post some motivation, as well as veteran interviews, when I can schedule them. (Veterans NEVER want to talk about themselves or what they’ve done. If you know a veteran, please reach out to me at stan@stanrmitchell.com. I would love to feature them on my site.)

As long-time readers know, I do all of this from a moderate perspective that focuses on unity in our country. I also don’t believe in clickbait, over-the-top headlines, or other tactics created to increase fear or panic, all in the hope of adding to web traffic. You will always get the sober, mature view, with a slight bit of my optimism peering through. 

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Semper Fidelis,

Stan R. Mitchell

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