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May 31, 2004
MilBlogs Memorial DayBy Greyhawk
The MilBlogs Pond is ripe with Memorial Day posts; a fishing trip through the 70-odd Ring members (plus a couple others) world-wide yields the following catch.
Budachaegi chimes in from Korea.
Chapomatic from "out to sea".
Sarah from Germany.
And Grim from his Hall.
Geek from somewhere in his Empire.
John Donovan from Castle Argghhh!
Dogtulosba has a briefing for you.
While Smash provides an interesting link.
And OkieMinnie does too (several, in fact).
While Baldilocks has some keen observations. (Of course)
Now let the poets have their say, via:
On a somewhat related note, in a media celebration in honor of Memorial Day The Denver Post apparently offered cash to former Bronco Reggie Rivers to drop his pants and take a dump on the graves of all who ever served; or perhaps to simply point out his superiority to them all.
Brad R. Torgersen, Reservist and site owner of Pool of Thought has an email exchange with our brave Sunday hero. Credit the man for responding to criticism, assuming he didn't have a slave do it for him.
And, this Memorial Day J Crue at doubleplusgood infotainment doesn't have a related post - he's gotten married and has paused his blogging accordingly. (Whipped, says I) ;>). Congratulate them here.
Same for Dagger Jag, who got a couple weeks off from duty in Iraq for his wedding.
Congratulations to them all! The Mrs and I will celebrate our 20th this fall. But should I be accepted in a certain volunteer request I'll spend it in Iraq. To early to say now even what the odds are of that happening, but that uncertainty is part of the program.
Treasure every day.
Posted by Greyhawk / May 31, 2004 11:43 AM | Permalink
This morning I went to the Memorial Day ceremony on post. The turnout was smaller than I wanted, but bigger than I'd hoped. I was fortunate to talk to a WWII and Korean War vet who had many interesting stories... Read More
Happy Memorial Day! I don't know how much I'll be posting today. I'm a little under the weather, but there are plenty of great Memorial Day offerings out there. John of Argghhh! has the story of 2nd Lt. Leonard Cowherd, Read More
. . . . . . . This is my Memorial Day post. It's the only post up. It's long. No other links. Just the story of 2lt Leonard Cowherd, Sarah Cerri Cowherd, and the Cowherd and Cerri families, as... Read More
[This post will remain up top through Monday, with updates as often as I find them - Russ] There have been many excellent things you should read (or which ought to be re-read) for Memorial Day this year. John of... Read More
There is no way to list all the good posts out there. I will list a few, and may add to it as the day goes on. Kleenex alert on all. Start here with Sgt. Hook Then go here to... Read More
Blackfive points out this Denver Post column by former Broncos player Reggie Rivers: Our military is one of the last bastions of slavery in the United States. At the moment, our slaves are stuck in a combat zone, getting killed... Read More
A roundup other bloggers' Memorial Day posts in no particular order: My Memorial Day 2004 post. Alphecca has a photo essay. Dean Esmay has several posts. Up for Anything Baseball Musings Freedom of Thought Arguing with Signposts Mudville Gazette Ann... Read More
Mudville Gazette has a long list of Memorial Day links by our best milbloggers. And James, of course, sums things up succinctly. Orwell said: "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do... Read More
Rather than list all of the sites covering Memorial Day I'll direct your attention to a few sites aggregating links to coverage. Start with the excellent roundup of milbloggers posts at Mudville Gazette, then follow that with a look at... Read More
I want to send out my appreciation, admiration, and gratitude for our nation's men and women of the military, active duty and veteran alike. You make it possible for a man to sit down at his computer and talk about... Read More
Earlier this week, we had a prime example of idiocy from the left end of the political spectrum, in the form of Reggie Rivers. (Go here for a nice summation of Mr. Rivers; this is also a nice summation. Both... Read More
This is my Memorial Day post. It's the only post up - until the final chapter comes in. It's long. No other links. Just the story of 2lt Leonard Cowherd, Sarah Cerri Cowherd, and the Cowherd and Cerri families, as... Read More
November 26, 2010
I think anyone who's ever pondered the "comment" option - once only available on blogs and bulletin boards, now ubiquitous on almost any web site - will appreciate this:
The so-called faculty of writing is not so much a faculty of writing as it is a faculty of thinking. When a man says, "I have an idea but I can't express it"; that man hasn't an idea but merely a vague feeling. If a man has a feeling of that kind, and will sit down for a half an hour and persistently try to put into writing what he feels, the probabilities are at least 90 percent that he will either be able to record it, or else realize that he has no idea at all. In either case, he will do himself a benefit.
That's wisdom from the past, captured for posterity at the US Naval Institute, shared via the web on the institute's 137th anniversary.
From their about page:
"The Naval Institute has three core activities," among them, History and Preservation:
The Naval Institute also has recently introduced Americans at War, a living history of Americans at war in their own words and from their own experiences. These 90-second vignettes convey powerful stories of inspiration, pride, and patriotism.
Take a look at the collection, and you'll see it's not limited to accounts from those who served on ships at sea, members of the other branches are well-represented.
I'm fortunate to have met USNI's Mary Ripley, she's responsible for the institute's oral history program (and she's the daughter of the late John Ripley, whose story is told here). She also deserves much credit for their blog. ("We're not the Navy nor any government agency. Blog and comment freely.") We met at a milblog conference - Mary knew (and I would come to realize) that milbloggers are the 21st-century version of exactly what the US Naval Institute is all about. Once that light bulb came on in my head, I mentioned a vague idea for a project to her - milblogs as the 21st century oral history that they are.
"Put that in writing," she said (of course - see first paragraph above!) - and here's part of the result.
Shortly after the first tent was pitched by the American military in Iraq a wire was connected to a computer therein, and the internet was available to a generation of Americans at war - many of whom had grown up online. From that point on, at any given moment, somewhere in Iraq a Soldier, Sailor, Airman or Marine was at a keyboard sharing the events of his or her day with the folks back home. While most would simply fire off an email, others took advantage of the (then) relatively new online blogging platforms to post their thoughts and experiences for the entire world to see. The milblog was born - and from that moment to this stories detailing everything from the most mundane aspects of camp life to intense combat action (often described within hours of the event) have been available on the web...
And et cetera - but since you're reading this on a milblog, you probably knew that. And you know that milblogs aren't just blogs written by troops at war, that many friends, family members, and supporters likewise documented their story of America at war online in near-real time, as those stories developed.
The diversity in membership of that group is broad, the one thing we all have in common is the impulse to make sense of the seemingly senseless, and communicate the tale - for each of us that impulse was strong enough to overcome whatever barriers prevent the vast majority of people from doing the same. Everyone at some point has some vague idea they believe should be shared - we were the people who, from some combination of internal and external urging, found and spent those many half hours persistently trying to write it down.
But where will all that be in another 137 years? Or five or ten, for that matter. That's something I've asked myself since at least 2004 - when I wrote this:
Membership in the ghost battalion has grown in the years since, and an ever growing majority of those abandoned-but-still-standing sites are vanishing. Have you checked out Lt Smash's site lately? How about Sgt Hook's? If you're a long-time milblog reader you know the first widely-read milblog from Operation Iraq Freedom and the first widely-read milblog from Afghanistan are both gone from the web. If you're a relative newcomer to this world you may never even have heard of them - or the dozens upon dozens of others who carried forth the standard they set down.
If you have a vague notion that something should be done about that, (a notion I've heard expressed more than once...) then you and I and the good folks at the US Naval Institute are in agreement. Preserving the history documented by the milbloggers is just one of the goals of the milblog project, the once-vague idea that we're now making real.
And it's a big idea, if I say so myself - too big to explain in one simple blog post, so stand by for more. Likewise, it's too big a task to be accomplished by just one person. So if you're a milblogger (and exactly what is a milblogger? is a topic for much further discussion on its own) I'm asking for your help. All I'll really need is just a little bit (maybe just one or two of those half hours...) of your time, and your willingness to tell the tale.
We've already made history, it's time to save it.
(More to follow...)
The Mudville Gazette is the on-line voice of an American warrior and his wife who stands by him. They prefer to see peaceful change render force of arms unnecessary. Until that day they stand fast with those who struggle for freedom, strike for reason, and pray for a better tomorrow.
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Original content copyright © 2003 - 2011 by Greyhawk. Fair, not-for-profit use of said material by others is encouraged, as long as acknowledgement and credit is given, to include the url of the original source post. Other arrangements can be made as needed.
Contact: greyhawk at mudvillegazette dot com