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Capitol Hill Beacon 10/03/2014

October 6, 2014 2:24 pm /
Copy Reduced to 80% from original to fit letter page 
inconsistency across pro-
grams and agencies.
We generally don’t know
who we are training. We
have little reliable infor-
mation,” one U.S. of-
ficial told RAND Corp.
researchers. Their study
“found significant prob-
lems with current U.S.
vetting practices in rela-
tion to security assistance.”
That was six years ago.
In 2008, similar prob-
lems were exposed by the
State Department inspec-
tor general in visa pro-
grams for thousands of
Afghan and Iraqi transla-
tors and interpreters who
worked for U.S. govern-
ment agencies. The pro-
grams were deemed at
“high risk for fraud and
abuse,” with almost 25
percent of those approved
failing to meet the eligibil-
ity criteria.
In 2012, after Afghan
trainees murdered 45 NA-
TO troops, U.S. Special
Operations forces sus-
pended Afghan police
and special forces train-
ing. Lax screening and
security measures led to
widespread abuse and cor-
ruption within Afghan law
enforcement units, not to
mention endangerment of
our troops. In addition
to a massive rescreening
effort of 350,000 Afghan
security forces, U.S. mili-
tary leaders directed coali-
tion force units to “create
safe zones inside (Afghan
National Security Forces)
compounds where they
can defend themselves if
Unfortunately, the “safe
zone” initiative didn’t
work at Camp Bastion in
September 2012, when
an unprecedented attack
by Taliban infiltrators left
two Marines dead, 17
troops wounded and eight
Harrier jets destroyed or
damaged. Neither did
“safe zones” stop the Au-
gust 2014 slaying of U.S.
Maj. Gen. Harold Greene
at the hands of a Taliban
infiltrator wearing an Af-
ghan army uniform.
And no such “safe
zones” have been created
here at home for when
Afghan trainees come to
our shores and suddenly
wander off.
—Where exactly were
the Afghan soldiers who
ditched Quantico found
and with whom?
According to press re-
ports citing unnamed fed-
eral law enforcement of-
ficials, Samimi and Ataye
were “picked up in Buffa-
lo, N.Y., without incident.”
Some speculated they
wanted to reunite with a
“relative.” I’m sure the res-
idents of Buffalo would
appreciate more details.
Alarmingly, when I
asked DHS/ICE pub-
lic affairs officer Khaalid
Walls on Tuesday what the
status of the Quantico Af-
ghan soldiers was, he told
me: “I haven’t heard of
—What steps are being
taken to ensure that the
Cape Cod Afghans aren’t
catch-and-release benefi-
According to Walls, the
men will be in immigra-
tion court in Batavia, N.Y.,
on Thursday for a hearing.
When I asked whether the
feds would intervene if the
judge orders them released
pending further removal
proceedings (which can
drag on for years), Walls
told me he didn’t know.
—Isn’t it uncanny that
both sets of AWOL Af-
ghan soldiers were head-
ed up north near the
U.S.-Canada border? The
Afghan trio who aban-
doned Camp Edwards
turned up on Rainbow
Bridge as they attempted
to enter Canada. That’s
just a half-hour away from
Buffalo, where the Quan-
tico Afghans were appre-
Side notes: The FBI is
still searching for Cana-
dian al-Qaida terror plot-
ter Amer el-Maati, who
trained in Afghanistan and
Pakistan, and fellow Cana-
dian fugitive jihadist Faker
Ben Abdelaziz Boussora,
another al-Qaida terror
suspect trained in Afghan-
istan. And just last week,
a Taliban-trained jihadist
living in Ottawa pleaded
guilty to a terror plot in-
volving 56 cellphone-trig-
gered explosive devices
smuggled into Canada
from Afghanistan.
Hiva Alizadeh was ar-
rested with beheading vid-
eos and “How To Kidnap
an American” pamphlets.
Past Canadian jihad plots
have targeted financial dis-
tricts, tourist landmarks,
government buildings and
power grids on both sides
of the border.
Last questions: Did the
Quantico and Cape Cod
soldiers know one anoth-
er? Have any other Afghan
soldiers gone missing?
When? Where? Inquiring,
non-complacent minds
want to know.
Michelle Malkin is the
author of “Culture of Cor-
ruption: Obama and his
Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks
and Cronies” (Regnery
2010). Her e-mail address
Malkin: Why were of cials quick to say the men were not a threat?
From Page 1A
The Midwest City
Fire Department
announced the pro-
motion of four fire-
fighters. The group
includes Bob Toney,
Rhett Murphy, Matt
Mockabee and Kyle
Maj. Toney has
been promoted to
Assistant Fire Chief/
Fire Marshal. His
promotion will take
effect following the
retirement of Assis-
tant Chief Tim Sny-
der. Chief Toney be-
gan his career with
MWCFD in 2000
and has promoted
through the ranks,
most recently as a
Company Officer on
Ladder 2(A). He lives
in Midwest City with
his wife Vanessa and
their children: Tan-
ner (17), Tiffani (15),
Courtney (14), Mor-
gan (12), Kaylee (10),
and Brylee (9).
Lt. Murphy has
been elevated to Cap-
tain. Murphy began
his career with the
MWCFD in 2001
and was most recent-
ly the Lieutenant of
Ladder 1(A) and a
member of the Haz-
Mat Team. He and
his wife, Kalyn; live
in Midwest City with
their three children;
Kayden (9), Declan
(7), and McCabe (4).
Williams, a senior
firefighter, has been
promoted to Ser-
geant. He has served
Midwest City since
2008, following his
graduation from the
Fire Academy at East-
ern Oklahoma Coun-
ty Technology Center.
Williams, his wife
Tara, and son Cash
(3) live in Midwest
Mockabee, also a
senior firefighter, has
been promoted to
sergeant following a
competitive promo-
tion testing process.
Sgt. Mockabee is
originally from Del
City and now lives
in a Midwest City
with his wife Mayme,
daughter Maeli (4),
and son Mason (18
months). Mockabee
graduated from the
Fire Academy at East-
ern Oklahoma Coun-
ty Technology Center
in 2006 and became
a Midwest City fire-
fighter in 2007. He
is assigned to Engine
4 on A-Shift.
Mockebee’s promo-
tion took place Sept.
24. Toney, Murphy
and Williams will be
formally promoted
effective Oct. 9.
The Midwest City
Fire Department
would like to con-
gratulate all four men
on their promotion.
Fire department announces promotions
-Provided photo
Bob Toney was promoted
from Major to Assistant
Fire Chief/Fire Marshal.
-Provided photo
Rhett Murphy has been
promoted from Lieu-
tenant to Captain.
-Provided photo
Kyle Williams has been
promoted from senior
frefghter to Sergeant.
-Provided photo
Matt Mockabee has been
promoted from senior
frefghter to Sergeant.
Maj. Toney elevated to Assistant Fire Chief/Fire Marshal
Legislative interim studies
will be getting underway in
both chambers soon to address
issues of importance to the
citizens of Oklahoma. These
studies could result in legisla-
tion being filed next session
on particular issues.
One of the studies  will be
researching the possibility
of allowing  doctors to pre-
scribe cannabis oil made from
hemp for medical use.  Med-
ical studies indicate that this
product can be used to treat
children and adults who suffer
from  epileptic  seizures and
help reduce the number and
intensity of their seizures. 
Gov. Fallin has expressed
opposition to  the legalization
of medical  marijuana. How-
ever, she supports the legaliza-
tion of cannabis oil for med-
ical use by patients stricken
with epileptic seizures.
It’s doubtful that even if
cannabis oil is legalized for
medical purposes that mar-
ijuana would follow.  And,
there are a number of reasons
According to  research from
the Oklahoma State  Bureau
of Narcotics (OSBN), during
the 1960’s and 70’s, the THC
concentration levels (marijua-
na’s psychoactive component)
were only about three percent.
At that level, the drug’s com-
ponent had more of a sedative
effect upon the user.  
Even in the 1960’s and
70’s,  marijuana was consid-
ered a “Gateway Drug” that’s
use  was likely to lead some-
one to a more highly addic-
tive drug like heroin, cocaine,
LSD, etc.
The OSBN  says that  in
2014, cultivated  marijuana
has THC that averages 12 to
15 percent and some strains
have even higher concentra-
tions. At these higher THC
levels, the drug is no longer
a sedative but a dangerous
hallucinogen that can heavily
damage the brain’s neurotrans-
A University of Mississippi
study found that  even newer
strains of cultivated marijua-
na  coming soon to the U.S.
market may reach as high as
36 percent THC levels.
A 2014 Swedish study found
that patients who reported on-
ly  occasional use of  marijua-
na  still developed “A Apathy
Syndrome” or a decline in mo-
tivation and initiative.  Users
suffer from mental dullness,
lack of job productivity, and
social seclusion.
Hospitals in Colorado re-
port  a steep increase in both
children and adults  who are
hospitalized from the ingestion
of edible  marijuana.   Colora-
do legalized recreational mari-
juana in January 2014.  While
the legal age to purchase recre-
ational marijuana in Colorado
is 18 years, schools in that
state are reporting an increase
in the number of children
who are becoming addicted
and seeking drug  counseling.
According to news reports,
Colorado  public school ad-
ministrators are reporting an
increase in student  expulsions
for possession on campuses.
Last March, about 300 cit-
izens lobbied the Oklahoma
legislature to legalize marijua-
na. They it legalized because
they believe it’s a victimless
crime.  They also believe their
individual freedoms are vio-
lated by a state that prevents
them from using marijuana.
They also argue that Oklaho-
ma’s high prison populations
could be greatly reduced given
that the state’s high incarcer-
ation rates are due mostly to
crimes stemming from pos-
session and use of drugs such
as marijuana. They also point
out that the medical use of
marijuana could help those
suffering from seizures. Final-
ly, they argue that Oklahoma
could benefit financially from
taxing marijuana.
It’s in the Interim Studies
that legislators gather research
and testimonies from experts
who deal with particular is-
sues while also hearing the
perspectives of citizens. These
are public meetings so every-
one is welcome to attend them
or you can also watch them
live on our website (www.ok-
In closing, I want to con-
gratulate Grove Elementary
School in Shawnee for being
recognized for the fourth con-
secutive year as a “Great Ex-
pectations” school. Only the
top  two percent of schools
nationwide receive this rec-
ognition.  I was honored to
present the school with an
Oklahoma State Senate Ci-
tation for Excellence at  last
Monday morning’s assembly. 
Grove  Elementary School Su-
perintendent, Sheril Payne,
faculty, students, and parents
are to be commended for this
outstanding achievement.
Last Tuesday, I also attend-
ed AT&T’s  program “It Can
Wait” for students at Shaw-
nee High School and Gordon
Cooper Career Tech. The pro-
gram demonstrated for stu-
dents (through a video and
simulator) the problems with
texting while driving.  Region-
al AT&T director, Jerry  Bay-
liss,  allowed the  students
to  operate the driving simula-
tor while texting.  Needless to
say, no one successfully com-
pleted the  task without a  ma-
jor simulated driving incident.
Mr. Bayliss encouraged the
students to make a pledge not
to text  while  driving.  It can

To contact me at the Cap-
itol, please write to Senator
Ron Sharp, State Capitol, 2300
N. Lincoln Blvd. Room 411A,
Oklahoma City, OK, 73105,
email me at,
or call (405) 521-5539.
Senate Review: Interim study planned for cannabis oil
Ron Sharp
State Senator
Chamber of Commerce Speed
Networking Luncheon set for Oct. 9
The Midwest City
Chamber of Commerce
will be holding a Speed
Networking Luncheon
on Thursday, Octo-
ber 9th from 11 a.m.
– 1 p.m. at the Midwest
City Chamber of Com-
merce office.
The cost of attending
is $15 for Midwest City
Chamber members and
$20 for non-members.
Lunch will be provided
and RSVP is required by
Monday, October 6th.
The Speed Network-
ing Luncheon is a
unique opportunity for
attendees to network
in a fun and fast-paced
environment. Attendees
move around the room
according to a table ro-
tation schedule. Each
person has 90 seconds
to talk about themselves
and their company. Busi-
ness cards, brochures
and work samples are
welcome to be handed
out during each table
For more information
or to RSVP, please call
the Midwest City Cham-
ber of Commerce at
405-733-3801 or email