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February 5, 2006
Open PostBy Greyhawk
Posted by Greyhawk / February 5, 2006 9:08 PM | Permalink
This week, the Iranians were referred to the security council. This week, various Muslim groups got themselves in a tizzy over cartoons that were published months ago. Read More
NAAACP Chairman Julian Bond referred to President George Bush as Hitler and compared the Republican Party as a whole to Nazi's during a vitriolic speech Wednesday night at Fayetteville State University in North Carolina. I was not planning on making Read More
From my email: well, i am writting in regard to what you have published at your filthy site.about the great prophet...no wonder since you are all living with no value just like animals without any kind of beleife...and no wonder Read More
According to both this World Magazine article and this cnews Canada article, it looks like Canada needs to beef up their border security. I mean, really, using unarmed personnel to guard their borders? Come on! In the Washington incident, it Read More
Dean Esmay read my post about the furor over the “insulting” cartoons that some Moslems find offensive. In his post, he says By the way, I’m a little disappointed in Chuck Simmins. I’m glad he recognized the problem with gloat... Read More
There is nothing quite as wonderful as a frivolous lawsuit. The type that seem concerned only about finding the deepest pockets and attempt to pilfer whatever they can by way of legal extortion. It reminds one of the quote from William Shakespeare, "... Read More
Army Regulations are pretty adamant that the crew must brief passenger before the flight. It is normal stuff - where we are going, how long it is going to take, no smoking in the lavatory or how to pee in a coke can, actions on contact, where to ...... Read More
The Last Virgin Trackback Party and Linkfest. Trackback here if you dare and I will link to you on this page.Linked To: Adam's Blog Michelle Malkin Two Babes And A Brain Basil's Blog Third World County The Uncoo... Read More
Link: WIStv.com Columbia, SC: NATO, Rumsfeld urge diplomacy in Iran dispute; McCain keeps military option. Ok, we invaded a Country which had no WMDs and which we had no smoking gun proof of nuclear, biological or chemical weapons. Now we Read More
Any worldwide religion that feels so threatened by a cartoon that it's members erupt into violence burning buildings, toting guns in the streets, and threatening to kill anyone who disagrees with them must be called what it is... CHILDISH. These Read More
This article was written about the Koran/toilet episode but I think it is equally relevant here. Why Islam is Disrespected Read More
So THIS is what it takes??? ...a CARTOON? ...Imagine if All Muslims directed this kind of righteous anger against Their Terrorists? This world would become safe in a week. But no. The Religion of Peace is too busy chasing cartoons, playing the victim... Read More
The icing on the cake? Well, if you've been reading JACK ARMY for this past year, you've probably figured out that something drastic happened that caused USAREC to cut me loose from the fold. Not only was I cut loose, but I was degraded yet again Read More
Some exciting news for milbloggers - the inaugural 2006 MilBlog Conference will take place on April 22 in Washington DC! From the MilBlog Conference's official website: "The conference is designed to bring milbloggers together for one full day of in... 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...)
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