Beltway Insider: Obama On Oregon Shooting; Gun Control; RSM/NATO/Kunduz Mission; DWB Hospital; UNGA

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President Obama, determined to have Common Sense Gun Reform legislation enacted, explained his intent to "politicize" the Umpqua College shooting and stop the plague of gun violence that continues to manifest itself in mass shootings across America.

According to Gallup, President Obama's job approval, over the past week, remained constant at 45% of those polled who approve of his effectiveness as President and those who disapprove of his effectiveness as President remained constant at 51%.

Obama Addresses Mass Shooting; Gun Control

As the nation again attempted to make sense of another mass shooting, this time at Umpqua Community College, in Roseburg, Oregon, that left nine students and faculty dead, and injured nine others, President Obama spoke with the press addressing an all too common scenario.

"This is a political choice that we make to allow this to happen every few months in America.  We collectively are answerable to those families who lose their loved ones because of our inaction.  When Americans are killed in mine disasters, we work to make mines safer.  When Americans are killed in floods and hurricanes, we make communities safer.  We have seatbelt laws because we know it saves lives.  So the notion that gun violence is somehow different, that our freedom and our Constitution prohibits any modest regulation doesn't make sense," the President said.

Umpqua Community College Shooting

The perpetrator, who local authorities have asked the media not to name or breathe life into his actions, committed suicide at the scene.

Initial reports, in a very active and fluid situation, indicated even greater casualty. Only by the swift action of local law enforcement and heroism by students did the end come faster than expected.

ATF agents indicated the perpetrator had "enough ammunition for a prolonged gunfight." Six weapons, five handguns and a long rifle, were recovered at the scene. A weapons fanatic, the perpetrator had eight additional weapons at his home.

The nine killed have been identified as: Lucero Alcaraz, 19; Treven Taylor Anspach, 20; Rebecka Ann Carnes, 18; Quinn Glen Cooper, 18, Kim Saltmarsh Dietz, 59; Lucas Eibel, 18, Jason Dale Johnson, 33, Lawrence Levine, 67 (Assistant professor), Sarena Dawn Moore, 44.

The injured have described a crazed individual "targeting Christians" "asking people their religion" and killing them if they admitted to Christianity, which was the case in Columbine. Media reports have also stated the perpetrator made a female beg for her life before killing her, which from a psychological viewpoint, would be considered the ultimate power, as close to supreme power as one can attain.

The carnage was slowed by the heroism, bravery and courage of Army veteran Chris Mintz, a student, who from all reports heard the shots, understood what has happening, ran to the library pulling alarms and yelling at students to run and confronted the shooter.

The confrontation between Mintz and the shooter, at the door of the English and Composition class, slowed the shooter as he had to stop and handle an unforeseen situation. He shot Mintz three times while Mintz was in a standing position, when he fell, he was shot four additional times. He miraculously survived. His heroic actions were noted by Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin.

The injured were taken to PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Hospital and Mercy Medical Center for treatment. The conditions were listed as two critical; two serious; two stable; three treated and released.

President Determined to Enact Commonsense Gun Control

Exasperated the President spoke with members of the media explaining "there has been another mass shooting."

His remarks, in order not to seem rote or routine, spoke of the town of Roseberg, Oregon, and of the details. He also spoke on the importance of change, change in our collective response, and change in the response of the elected officials, change in the law.

The complacency of some sections of the American people has been discussed as the shooter gave strong indication of his plans in a chat room. Explaining they should not go to school "if they live in the Northwest." This telling post was replied to with a vague go with god brother in arms end. No person reported the potential threat.

His determination to enact change is clear. He will, to the dismay of some, enact commonsense gun reform. Many may posture as it is party politics and an election season; others may silently thank him, simply for the sake of their own loved one.

Excerpts from the President's address:

"Each time this happens I'm going to bring this up.  Each time this happens I am going to say that we can actually do something about it, but we're going to have to change our laws.  And this is not something I can do by myself.  I've got to have a Congress and I've got to have state legislatures and governors who are willing to work with me on this."

"We talked about this after Columbine and Blacksburg, after Tucson, after Newtown, after Aurora, after Charleston.  It cannot be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun," the president said.

"We know that other countries, in response to one mass shooting, have been able to craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings.  Friends of ours, allies of ours -- Great Britain, Australia, countries like ours.  So we know there are ways to prevent it."

U.S. and Afghan Troops Fight to Retake Kunduz

Afghan ground troops, with protection from U. S. Air Strikes, moved on the city of Kunduz, a Taliban stronghold, fighting to retake the strategically located afghan city. The Taliban retained control, the first urban area taken by the Taliban since 2001.

In explaining U.S. involvement, which has for more than the past decade been one of support and advisement and the commitment to the American people that he will not reenter into an Afghanistan war, No boots on the ground, has been the policy of this administration and will remain.

"U.S. and coalition forces are providing advisory support and have conducted a limited number of airstrikes, primarily for the purposes of force protection," said Josh Earnest, White House Press Secretary.

RSM, NATO and The Afghan Mission

The Resolute Support Mission, RSM, a North Atlantic Treaty Organization, NATO led and U.S. backed mission operational as of January 2015 is providing 13,223 total troops.

"The President, when announcing these decisions in the past when it comes to our military commitment to Afghanistan, has routinely noted that the conditions on the ground influence that policy process.  And so I would expect that would be the case in this circumstance as well," Earnest said.

The mission is to train, advise and assist the Afghan security forces and institutions. This mission is supported heavily by the United States with 6,834 troops. All other nations, even staunchest allies of the U.S., provide less than 1,000 total troops.

The top ten nations providing troops is rounded out by Georgia with 885; Germany, 850; Romania, 650; Turkey, 503; Italy, 500; United Kingdom, 470; Australia, 400; Spain, 294; Czech Republic, 236.  

Neither the U.S. nor NATO troops are believed to have an operational presence in the region. The city is strategically located with solid infrastructure and a major transportation hub to Northern Afghanistan.

Doctors Without Borders Hospital Hit

Doctors Without Borders, an international humanitarian and non-governmental organization (NGO), has announced it will be leaving the Kunduz region after sustaining massive damage in an American air strike which leveled the medical installation killing at least 22 staff members and 10 patients.

Reports from inside Afghanistan have indicated three children were among the dead. Many on the French led team, Medecins Sans Frontieres,  are still missing and are unaccounted for and the facility was obliterated, some areas, in flames other parts reduced to rubble after nearly two dozen separate airstrikes.

Pentagon officials indicated the air strikes were in the vicinity and were targeting insurgents firing upon U.S. personnel.

Jens Stoltenberg, NATO Secretary General, said, "A US investigation into this tragic incident is under way in coordination with the afghan government."

President Obama issued the following statement, "The Department of Defense has launched a full investigation, and we will await the results of that inquiry before making a definitive judgment as to the circumstances of this tragedy.  I have asked the Department of Defense to keep me apprised of the investigation and expect a full accounting of the facts and circumstances. We will continue to work closely with President Ghani, the Afghan government, and our international partners to support the Afghan National Defense and Security forces as they work to secure their country."

Both organization offered deep condolences.

U.S. Military Plane Crashes in Jalalabad

President Obama issued the following statement on the military plane crash that took the lives of military personnel, defense contractors and Afghanistan civilians.

"Six U.S. Airmen and five contractors lost their lives in a military plane crash in Jalalabad, Afghanistan yesterday.  In addition to the Americans we mourn, we also are saddened that Afghan civilians lost their lives in this incident.  As we mark this terrible loss of life, we are reminded of the sacrifice brave Americans and our Afghan partners make each and every day in the name of freedom and security."

United Nations General Assembly Recap

The United Nations General Assembly, hosted the world's leaders at the New York City United Nations home, this week ushering in the 70th Anniversary of the founding of the global governing body.

Leaders from more than 100 nations, 20 multilateral bodies, and 120 civil society and private organizations met to review the global process in countering ISIS/ISIL.

Remaining committed and dedicated to the extermination of ISIS/ISIL (Islamic State), the administration offered to coalition member nations an annual report of advances and victories from the past year.

Additionally, the 70th Session of the General Assembly spoke on issues which affect the world population. Countering the Foreign Terrorist Fighter threat, which is quickly becoming a top five global issue, as the Islamic State moves its recruitment and message via the internet gathering lone wolves or disenfranchised nationals.

Terrorist fighter one of them. The known threats and the unknown threats, Nations that may be slower to progress than others are benefiting from the advances made in areas of energy, emerging nations, clean water, sustainability development goals and a commitment to the people of the world to end the authoritarian rule over a subservient people.

Syrian Refugees

Many speakers drew attention to the plight of refugees and displaced persons who are victims of the conflict in Syria and Iraq, and to the pressing unmet humanitarian situation.  A number of speakers announced new contributions to the UN humanitarian appeals for Syria and Iraq as well as other mechanisms to help relieve the situation.

A detailed report issued indicated total amount of Syrian Refugees and nations within Europe bearing the extent of the burden.

The three highest nations, Germany, accepted a total of 108,897 asylum applications, Sweden, 64,685; Hungary, 54,125; Serbia, 77, 196. Other nations throughout Europe include Bulgaria with 15,197 applications; Netherlands, 15,254; Austria, 20,946;  Denmark, 12,277; Switzerland, 8,683; France, 6,895; Spain, 5,554; United Kingdom, 7,196; Norway, Belgium, 6,334; Greece, 3,969; Montenegro, 2,962;  Romania, 2,3Italy, 2,143; Macedonia, 2,057. Regions including Poland, the Czech Republic, Lithuanian, Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Albania all reported less than 1000 asylum applications.

Israel's Netanyahu Warns of "Un-Muzzled" Iran

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Addressed the United Nations General Assembly warning the full body of an "un-muzzled" Iran and the ramification for the world

His message one of common sense, "when bad behavior gets rewarded it only gets worse" and "Unleashed and un-muzzled, Iran will go on the prowl devouring more and more prey."

Netanyahu has said the United States has no greater ally in the region that Israel of which this administration has always, in theory, agreed.

In practice, however, the administration has rushed into the newlywed coupling with Iran, who has stated, officially, they won the negotiation process, that Iran has stood against the world negotiators and come out ahead. Statements which can be found on the Iranian President Rouhani official web page. These triumphant statements are vastly different then what is reported in the American media.

Netanyahu stated within the 45 minute speech to the General Body, he is willing, without precondition to, continue peace negotiations with the State of Palestine, with the outcome of two states for two peoples.  

Expecting a demilitarized Palestinian State, however, is akin to the bully on the playground, because Israel is stronger, well protected, well liked and respected, demanding submission. Each state, is entitled to its own constitution, laws, rulers and defense.

For more information on President Barack Obama:


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