Welcome to the Dawn Patrol, our daily roundup of information on the War on Terror and other topics - from the MilBlogs and other sources around the world. If you're a blogger, you can join the conversation. If you link to any of these stories, add a link to the Dawn Patrol too and your trackback will be added to the list. Hat Tips to the Dawn Patrol are greatly appreciated.
Gen. David H. Petraeus, commanding general, Multi-National Force, and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker discuss the details of their report on the military and political situation in Iraq. They testify before a joint hearing of the House Armed Services Cmte. and the House Foreign Affairs Cmte.
In 24-hr battle, Hawr Rajab turns on al-Qaeda -- [MNF-I]
HAWR RAJAB, Iraq – Over the course of 24-hours across September 6-7, a decisive battle reshaped the security outlook for Hawr Rajab, when more than 80 concerned local citizens swept through the streets looking to drive al-Qaeda elements out of the city.
The concerned local citizens coordinated with the imam of a local mosque to broadcast the message to al-Qaeda, “Move to the mosque and they will be given amnesty, and there will be peace in Hawr Rajab.”
Don’t Ask Me What I Think about the Petraeus Report -- [NRO - Michael Yon - in Iraq]
Ask the battalion commanders.
Weeks ago, as the deadline for General David Petraeus’s progress report on the war loomed, journalists were already asking me what I thought of it. Then, as now, I do not know what to think of the report since it is not yet published. Even this coming week, after listening to the general’s testimony before Congress, I will have to read the report and transcripts numerous times, sleep on the information, and reflect on it in light of my own observations of the situation in Iraq. The outcome of the war in Iraq, and to some extent the greater War on Terror, will largely depend upon our decisions today. The outcome is too important for quick words. Many will try to be the first to report on the report, and their reports likely will be the most unreliable.
The troop surge IS working... -- [Eighty Deuce On The Loose - In Iraq]
So I've heard a little bit on the news and seen online about the recent analysis of the Iraqi government and their failing to meet 11 of the 18 benchmarks that were set for them. I'm not up to date on what these benchmarks are so I wont comment about what I think about that, because I dont know if I would feel the benchmarks were realistically obtainable with the given situation or not. One thing I can comment on based on my experiences here lately is that the Presidents troop surge which went in to full effect in late June I believe, combined with the new strategies that are in place with rooting out Al Qaeda and whatnot, are in fact working!
Anbar Awakens Part I: The Battle of Ramadi -- [Michael Totten - in Iraq]
RAMADI, IRAQ – After spending some time in and around Baghdad with the United States military I visited the city of Ramadi, the capital of Iraq’s notoriously convulsive and violent Anbar Province, and breathed an unlikely sigh of relief. Only a few months ago Ramadi was one of the most dangerous cities in the world. It was another “Fallujah,” and certainly the most dangerous place in Iraq. Today, to the astonishment of everyone – especially the United States Army and Marines – it is perhaps the safest city in all of Iraq outside of Kurdistan.
Wish You Were Here! (& Caveat) -- [INDC Journal - in Iraq]
I'm holding a Russian shoulder-fired surface-to-air-missile (SAM), part of a weapons cache found by IPs and brought back to Fallujah Police Headquarters today. At my feet are fuses, detonators, an anti-personnel mine and a French anti-tank missile launcher. Out back were mortars and other artillery rounds of all shapes and sizes, often used for IEDs. One IP casually strolled into the station carrying an immense, fused artillery shell. The Marines yelled at him to "get it the hell outside," though I was already high-tailing it up the stairs before they could finish the instruction.
One piece of information to caveat my initial positive impressions of Fallujah: a significant reason the city is so peaceful is a ban on non-commercial vehicle traffic instituted at the request of the police a couple of months ago, after a suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (SVBIED) killed and maimed Fallujans attending the funeral of a slain cop.
Dronetek- From The Source: The US Army's 875th Combat engineers, engage 2 insurgents
The US Army's 875th Combat engineers, chase down and engage two armed insurgents in Iraq.
Marines, Iraqi Police rid Anbar of insurgents -- [MNF-I]
SAQLAWIYAH — The Marines of Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6, and local Iraqi Police recently swept through the farmlands outside Habbaniyah while conducting Operation Street Sweeper II, to rid the area of insurgents and their deadly tools
Leaders of Diyala River Valley recommit to reconciliation -- [MNF-I]
BAQUBAH — In an effort to build upon the recent success of the Aug. 19 reconciliation agreement between more than 80 leaders from the Diyala River Valley, approximately 40 tribal leaders recently gathered at the Baqubah Government Center to continue their discussions about the importance of reconciliation.
Cockroaches & Cinderblocks: Keeping an eye out for the out-of-place -- [Fightin 6th Marines - in Iraq]
To the Yorba-Linda, Calif., native, the cinderblock, sitting in the sun-baked mud, stuck out like a cockroach in a spoonful of oatmeal.
“Now, tell me why a cinderblock would be just sitting in the middle of this field, all by itself,” implored the smirking 22-year-old fire team leader, to no one in particular. “Like we wouldn’t notice these things.”
In the distance, away from the two Marines who accompanied Bear, were IPs, who had brought the Marines to the location. The IPs made their way alongside the Marines through dust and 100-degree-plus heat, as they meticulously scanned the area for weapons caches.
Bear and his fellow Marine, Pfc. Cesar R. Burgos, approached with a metal detector, sweeping back and forth, low to the ground. Suddenly, the device made a sharp beeping sound, signaling the presence of metal.
“Let’s dig,” said Bear, a 2003 El Dorado High School graduate.
The digging continued for a few minutes until Burgos struck something solid with the tip of his shovel.
Operation Alljah: The Swarm -- [INDC Journal - in Iraq]
Commenced on May 29 and ending last week, Operation Alljah was the latest and most successful bid to achieve security in the former insurgent stronghold of Fallujah, marrying projection of force with aggressive civil affairs outreach. During the operation, the city was subdivided into 10 neighborhoods in efforts dubbed "the swarm," a coordinated series of counterinsurgency components: US troops and Iraqi Security Forces rolled into a neighborhood and established security, cordoned it off with concrete barrier checkpoints, created a local police precinct, recruited a neighborhood watch, provided employment for day laborers, conducted an information campaign to inform the citizenry of the operation, arbitrated any claims against Iraqi or US forces, distributed food and began meetings with neighborhood leaders to address infrastructure concerns.
The Last Few Days in Samarra -- [Jeff Emanual - in Iraq]
This evening, I went along with 3rd Platoon to check on several gas stations around the city, which should have received shipments of fuel yesterday to provide to the people here. We also had an element of M1 Tanks which checked other gas stations, to the south. One of those tanks hit an IED on Route Heat (the southernmost east-west running road in the city), where 2nd Platoon had hit one the other day when I was with them. Nobody was hurt, and the vehicles were in good enough shape to continue their mission.
As we exited our first gas station, an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade) was fired in our direction, and hit a house to our north with a deafening BOOM!! Again, no paratroopers were injured, and the rest of our evening was uneventful as we checked two more gas stations and headed back to post.
Tomorrow we'll be checking out a couple of markets, and then going out again at night to find a big AQI guy and bring him in. Should be interesting.
Dronetek- From the Source:The 875th Combat engineers call in an apache to deal with a group on insur
The 875th Combat engineers call in an apache to deal with a group on insurgents in Iraq. According to the soldier who supplied me with this footage, they were shooting at their outpost.
Anbar, meet the Ospreys -- [Desert Flier - in Iraq]
Loitering in the chow hall last night, I was sitting with the CASEVAC (casualty evacuation) corpsmen stationed here in Taquaddum. Having worked with them over the past seven months, I've never had the opportunity to sit and actually hold down a conversation until tonight. Flying missions with them was always a rushed affair filled with yelling report over the roar of prop wash and vague hand signals in the helo while we transported critically ill patients to Level III hospitals.
When I first arrived in Anbar in February, mission breakdown followed these general rules: daytime medevac was handled by the Marine Corps. and a pair of H-46 helicopters with two CASEVAC corpsmen, while night missions were handled by the Army aeromedical Blackhawks and a flight medic. However, ...
Labor Day -- [Far From Perfect - in Iraq]
We went out to an area that was once a coalition outpost yesterday. Before that it was one of Saddam’s many ammunition dumps. The place was a huge, many miled, wasteland scattered with debris from the bunkers and structures that used to be there. There were rusted shell casings and vehicle parts every few feet, and I couldn’t help but imagine just how big that place was before we bombed it out of existence. We drove through the old outpost to get out there. High earthen barriers and rotten HESCO barriers topped with the green shreds of old sandbag emplacements made the entrance seem like something straight out of a 1970s post apocalyptic movie. I half expected Mad Max to come barreling over the top of one of the craters. It didn’t help the that the sky had turned that sickening gray/brown you can only get here and the wind was blowing hot and hard from an oncoming dust storm. It was probably the most desolate place I have seen yet, and that is saying a lot in this country. The place was creepy and you could feel death there.
Gun Tape Footage - Iraq
Footage from Tikrit, part of initial stike for Baghdad in Iraq war.
"I Hear The Choppers Comin'...." -- [All Quiet on the Southwest Asian Front]
...We've taken too many casualties we shouldn't have this time. I'm very, very tired of seeing my friends go out to drive around for a few hours, waiting to get blown up. Yes, we're fighting back. We're capturing cell leaders and Jaysh al-Mahdi members at a great clip. But not enough. And we're not even fighting like you think. Our tanks are not being put to the use they could be. Our snipers sit idle. Our mortars haven't touched their tubes in weeks.
But we're 'putting an Iraqi face on things'. I never thought I'd long for the day when we could have a unit as reliable as ARVN on our side. The IP are a joke. The IA are better only by comparison.
An Army of...Dude Give Me A Break -- [Guidons, Guidons, Guidons!]
I was surfing around the internets the other day and noticed on the Danger Room a little post that said Army of Dude was leaving Iraq. For those who don't know Danger Room is a little skeptical of our efforts over here in the cradle of civilization, ...
...To fly around the big city now is to see a totally different picture that when we arrived a year ago. It's much more calm. It isn't unusual to fly a whole mission without a troops in contact call...unheard of a year ago. In 2004 it was nearly impossible to fly at night without spotting some type of gunfire just about every minute if one looked hard enough. There were in fact engagements I was involved with that looked like something out of the final scene of Star Wars and we were in the X-Wings attacking the Death Star. Now it's possible to fly hours without seeing it. Let me get this straight, it doesn't mean the war is won, but it does mean that I can see that things ARE changing. It will be up to the Iraqis finish the job...but for what it's worth progress is being made...it's just a shame for everyone that it's taken this long.
I wish Mr. Horton the best of luck outside the Army and thank him for his service...maybe one day we will all be able to say that his and his comrades sacrifice was worth it.
America At War -- [Villainous Company]
...My question to you today is, how do we go about instilling a sense of duty in America's young? How do we instill a sense of civic duty in our citizenry at large?
I have complained about this before. Let me be blunt, though I know some of you disagree with me. I cannot disagree more with the argument that the reason there is not more support for this war is that the President has not asked us to "sacrifice". Not to put too fine a point on it, that is utter bullshit. To hear that argument from conservatives makes this Marine wife's blood boil.
We do not lack knowledge that there is a war going on: the news is all around us - on the television, in our newspapers, in magazines, on the Internet. We know that only a small part of America is fighting and dying on our behalf. If we cared, more of us could certainly step up to the plate and volunteer to help out. The truth is, we don't care. Or more accurately, perhaps we care, but not quite enough to do something concrete about it.
Iraq Pictures - 08 September 2007 -- [Iraq Pictures - in Iraq]
New Iraqi army recruits who volunteered to join during a recruiting drive listen for their names before being transported to their basic training site. The training program will last 45 days. The recruits are a few of the 1,500 who signed up during a recruiting drive.
Pic: SGT Marcus Butler
Get Informed -- [VA Mortgage Center Blog]
Yes, we are still at war in Afghanistan. However, if you talked to some people you would never know it. I have had some people actually ask me if there is still a war going on over there and if I have seen any “real” combat. Part of me wants to choke them for asking such a dumb question and part of me wants to hug them and feel sorry for them because they are so ill-informed and ignorant.
You may ask yourself how can someone not know that we sill have troops actively engaged in combat in Afghanistan? Well, it is because these people either have their head in the sand or use the nightly news reports as their only source of information. Unless there is body count higher than 50, some foreign missionaries kidnapped, or tons of opium destroyed you simply do not hear anything about Afghanistan. It is sad that people either choose to ignore all what their country is involved in or what their own countrymen are risking their lives for. All someone has to do in order to see that we are still very active in Afghanistan is to read articles like this,
Life On The Frontline,Afghanistan.
Over 70 British troops have been killed in Afghanistan since the Taliban was ousted in 2001. Sky's Alex Crawford has been with UK troops in the Helmand province and has this report on life for one small infantry unit holding the line against the Taliban.
The Military Press Officer -- [Vaughan Smith - in Afghanistan]
Mike’s main job is to make sure that I don’t compromise operational security. To check that I don’t put the soldiers lives at risk by what I write or film. He also helps me get around. He can organise space on transport and knows where I might get the information that I want.
At the beginning of the trip I was told me that he was also here to protect me, so that troops in the field didn’t have to. They should be concentrating on their job, not the visiting journalist.
But he is a Matelot and far from the ocean here. His naval trade is hydrography and meteorology. Afghanistan is a parched and land-locked country. I don’t expect that he will be shooting many Taliban but he tells me that it will be hot and dry tomorrow.
Whiteboards and Annotations: shaping the story -- [Afghanistan Blog - Scott Kesterson]
The process of making a documentary film on the war in Afghanistan is an integration of extremes. From a year of living amongst soldiers and their continued mission supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and the War on Terror, the setting has now shifted to the quiet rooms, long desks, computer monitors and the hum of terabyte drives in the background. Dallas, Texas has become my new home in the final leg of a fifteen month journey to bring an understanding of the culture of war to the Silver Screen.
The initial focus of the editing process is to sort the footage, create a working movie-trailer, and to settle on the official title of the film. Though the title "The Forgotten War" was created as the working title for the project, it has historically been used in reference to the Korean conflict. We are now in the final stages of review of the title that will encapsulate the experience of Afghanistan.
Iranian Raises Possibility Of An Intrusion Into Iraq -- [New York Times]
In a sharp escalation of a dispute over border fighting, an official Iranian delegation at a diplomatic conference here warned Sunday that if the Iraqi government could not stop militants from crossing into Iran and carrying out attacks, the Iranian authorities would respond militarily.
Patriot Day~September 11 -- [Tanker Brothers]
September 11 is the anniversary of a terrible day in our country. That is the day that terrorists attacked civilians and around 3,000 people died. 3,000 fathers, brothers, husbands, friends, wives, mothers, daughters.
September 11 is now "Patriot Day". A day that we use to remember what happened that day. The horror, the heroism. At 8:46 a.m. (Eastern Time) the President asks that we observe a moment of silence for those that lost their lives that day.
Hispanic Heritage Month 2007: Sept. 15 – Oct. 15 -- [Sweetnes& Light]
The estimated Hispanic population of the United States as of July 1, 2006, making people of Hispanic origin the nation’s largest ethnic or race minority. Hispanics constituted 15 percent of the nation’s total population. (This estimate does not include the 3.9 million residents of Puerto Rico.)
Iran -- [The Belmont Club]
Readers of Pajamas Media probably know that I'm engaged in a low-key debate with Michael Ledeen over whether it is desirable to push for regime change in Iran now. For the record, Ledeen does not advocate using primarily military means to overthrow the Ayatollahs. He argues that Iran has had a long record of belligerence against the US and "it’s time for us to fight back … using political and economic weapons, not military power."
Neither Drezner, Rubin, Packer nor de Borchgrave assert that the administration is actually going to war with Iran after Labor Day.
North Korea Is Losing Control of Its Borders -- [One Free Korea ]
...Recently, North Korea has taken to executing people in public. Having accepted that it is no longer loved, the regime now aspires only to be feared. The execution you just saw happened in March 2005. Three people were shot for making contact with the outside world, most likely missionaries or defection brokers.
Beware the War of Tomorrow -- [Yankee Sailor at Military.com]
Since the start of the War on Terror many calls have been made to make increasingly pervasive changes in the U.S. military in response to what is frequently characterized as the “war of tomorrow”. The most recent came in the pages of the Weekly Standard’s online edition from John Noonan, and challenged the Pentagon to completely overhaul the curricula at its service academies. However, while the changing security environment in the world does demand ongoing rethinking of forces and roles, for the Navy in particular, too radical a change is unwise in the face of recent maritime developments.
Take China, for example....
Second Bin Laden Tape Expected -- [ABC News]
A second tape from Osama bin Laden was recorded in the same location as the video released last week.
People in the intelligence community who have seen the tape feel it is directly related to the 9/11 anniversary since the al Qaeda leader introduces the prerecorded video of one of the 9/11 hijackers, Waleed al Shehri.
Thoughts On The Osama Tape: Was It A Forgery? -- [Stop the ACLU]
...In conclusion…there are a lot of oddities that open up a lot of questions. What we do know is that the voice analysis says it is Osama. It wouldn’t be a surprise if Adam Gadahn wrote the speech. I think he probably did. It doesn’t really matter, since Al Qaeda has adopted him as a spokesman anyway. So, he wrote it and Osama read it. The only thing of significance we can ponder on from these pecularities of the tape is whether it is an old video voiced over, or a new one. Either way it opens up a lot of new questions. If it is an old one, and the voice is that of Osama, then why does Al Qaeda not want us to see him in his present state? If it is a new one, we come back to questions about the beard, droopy eye, and why all of the current events were during frozen parts of the film.
The Importance and Unimportance of Bin Laden Videos -- [Counterterrorism Blog]
There is an interesting debate ongoing over whether the mass media, and particularly Arab-language television, should broadcast and assign great importance to the videos of al Qaeda leaders, particularly Osama bin Laden.
Do the broadcasts help create a mystique around a cult figure that inspires those who want to participate in the broader al Qaeda project, even on an ad hoc basis? Or are such broadcasts necessary for the general public to see and understand al Qaeda, to understand the enemy more clearly? Or both, and does it make any difference?
American Freedom Foundation -- [Jack Army - in Iraq]
A friend of mine asked me to post about the American Freedom Foundation and all the good work they are doing.
The American Freedom Foundation (www.americanfreedomfoundation.org) is a 501(c)3 public benefit corporation organized to honor veterans of America's armed forces and raise money and awareness for various veterans' organizations with special emphasis directed to welfare and educational issues facing those wounded in action, those disabled and families and children of veterans killed in action during Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Schumer Floor Speech Slandering U.S. Troops Ignored by Old Media -- [NewsBusters]
Bloggers have caught a politician saying one thing in a speech, while carrying a very different rendering of a critical passage at a supposed "transcript" of that speech.
The difference is significant.
The transcript whitewashes a slander on the performance of US troops in Iraq delivered by a United States senator.
Specifically, New York's Charles Schumer gave a made a speech on the floor of the Senate last week ascribing the turnaround in the Anbar province in Iraq to the locals, and discrediting the notion that American troops could have had anything to do with it.
BUSTED!... Schumer Wipes Away Disgraceful Line From Website -- [Gateway Pundit]
BUSTED... Slick Senator Schumer erases slandering line against the troops from his own website!
Senator Schumer, you are not only pathetic in your attacks against the troops during wartime-
You are a coward, Senator!
Jane Wyman and Ronald Reagan hold their 9-month-old daughter, Maureen, on Sept. 13, 1941 -- [Newsday]
LOS ANGELES - Jane Wyman, an Academy Award winner for her performance as the deaf rape victim in "Johnny Belinda," star of the long-running TV series "Falcon Crest" and Ronald Reagan's first wife, died Monday morning at 93.
We have troops in 130 countries -- [Flopping Aces]
Whether it’s Democratic Presidential candidate, Rep. Dennis Kucinich, or Republican candidate, Dr. Ron Paul, or Osama Bin Laden…millions-perhaps billions of people around the globe believe that the United States military is occupying the 130 of the 193 nations on the planet. America has one of the largest militaries in the world, arguably the most powerful, and this one nation-we’re led to believe-has occupation forces in almost every country. From Angola to Zimbabwe, American legions are everywhere.
This claim is grossly misleading-so much so that that those who make it are either complete idiots, or propagandists pushing personal political agendas rather than truth and reality. Yes, it’s technically true that the United States has military forces in 130 nations, but to suggest that these forces are:
History Made in Military Aviation -- [Captain's Journal]
Published September 10th, 2007 by Herschel Smith in UAVs, Army, Iraq |
September 1st came and went quietly without any public discourse on what might be a very signficant event in military aviation. An unmanned aerial vehicle scored a kill of two IED emplacers.
U.S. Congress IN Uproar By Womans Choice of Words
Slime From The Fever Swamps -- [Blue Crab Boulevard]
As sickening as this is, in a way it is a good thing that the mask has slipped. Any Democratic party politician who accepts any aid from MoveOn.org should have to address this bit of shark-jumping from that group. Because when you call the general commanding American troops in the field - with the approval of the United States Senate - a traitor, you have crossed a line.
General Petraeus or General Betray Us? -- [MoveOn.org]
View the ad (PDF)Cooking the books for the White House
General Petraeus is a military man constantly at war with the facts. In 2004, just before the election, he said there was “tangible progress“ in Iraq and that “Iraqi leaders are stepping forward.”
Washington Post, “Battling for Iraq,” by David H. Petraeus. 9/26/04 (see below)
And last week Petraeus, the architect of the escalation of troops in Iraq , said ”We say we have achieved progress, and we are obviously going to do everything we can to build on that progress.”
White House: No 'cooking the books' with Petraeus -- [The Swamp]
Snow also denounced a MoveOn.org ad today claiming that Crocker is cooking the books in his report about progress in security gains in Iraq as a “boorish, unworthy, childish attack. “Gen. Petraeus is not going to be cooking the books,’’ said Snow, maintaining that the general “is trying to… stay as far away from politics as possible.’’
“We think that it is incumbent on members of Congress to try to get a full picture of what is going on in Iraq’’ before deciding what should be done about it, Snow said. “Lawmakers can be skeptical,’’ he said, “but they also ought to be fair-minded.’’
Will Democrats Denounce MoveOn? [The Tank - Pete Hegseth]
Today - as General David Petraeus provides his Iraq assessment to Congress-the anti-war group, MoveOn.org, is running a full - page advertisement in the New York Times with the headline: General Petraeus or General Betray us? Cooking the books for the White House.
Let's be clear: MoveOn.org is suggesting that General Petraeus has 'betrayed' his country. This is disgusting. To attack as a traitor an American general commanding forces in war, because his ‘on the ground' experience does not align with MoveOn.org's political objectives, is utterly shameful. It shows contempt for America's military leadership, as well as for the troops who have confidence in him, as our fellow soldiers in Iraq certainly do.
Anti-war leaders stymied, frustrated -- [The Politico]
A well-known anti-war leader has gone public with the transcript of a private conference call that shows peace activists are exasperated with the Democratic congressional leadership and at a loss for a long-term strategy.
The future of Iraq, and the past
Among all the possible mistakes or miscues that account for the length of the war in Iraq, there is one that is blindingly obvious that I have yet to hear anyone mention
How much responsibility do the liberal Democrats bear for lengthening the war and costing American lives?
To make my point, I am going to fall back on my favorite analogy to war--football.
Imagine, as my favorite Vikings open the season this weekend with the Atlanta Falcons, that the Vikings cheerleaders come out with buttons that say 'Make Love not War" and "Women Against Football Madness".
The Vikings owners and executive staff are steadfast in their support for the importance of winning. But some members of the coaching staff have anonymously leaked to the media their doubts about the ability of only 55 men to overcome the opposition. Some have even wondered about the moral imperative of 'winning'; after all the Falcons players are just innocent pawns in this struggle, why do they deserve to 'lose'?
Initially, the game goes well. The Falcon's defense is no match for the awesome firepower of the Vikings offense. Shock and awe paves the way for a quick Falcon's collapse. But the Falcon's regroup, and begin a series of long pass plays and razzle dazzle trick plays
Alive Day Memories--Updated -- [Fuzzilicious Thinking]
"Alive Day" is a label many wounded apply to the day they were hit--the day they could've died but lived instead. HBO has taken that label for a new documentary by James Gandolfini of Sopranos fame that seems to be worth checking out.
As regular readers know, the well-being and treatment of the wounded is a subject that is very close to my heart. So, when I hear of a documentary being done about the experiences of some of them, I start to get nervous. I worry that it will be exploitative or condescending, or in some way pitying--anyone who works with the wounded knows that in most cases, offers of pity are generally not well-received.
Alive Day -- [Lumberjack in a Desert - jrsalzman - injured in Iraq]
I want to give everyone a heads up for an HBO documentary, "Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq" premiering Sunday at 10:30 p.m. EDT. Our Alive Day is the day each of us nearly lost our life in combat (the vast majority of us to ieds/rpgs). Just for the record, my alive day is December 19 and I intend on making it a positive aspect in my life every year. The documentary is based on a set of interviews with 10 Soldiers and Marines. Most of them were long gone by the time I got to Walter Reed on the eve of Dec 24th, 2006 (although I did share the same Physical Therapist as famed triple amputee, Sgt. Bryan Anderson) I did however attend the Vail Veterans Program this past March where I got stuck in an airport (after our connecting plane broke) with Dawn Halfaker. She was the first "senior" arm amputee I had met (it had only been about 3 months since my incident when I met her, and she had already left Walter Reed a year earlier). What started out as a simple "hi, were you at Walter Reed?" quickly turned into "so how do you tie your shoes? How do you scrub the left side of your body?" (since we both lost our right arm) It was great to finally talk to someone like me who knew exactly what I was going through.
"no credible evidence that TNR made any attempt at fact checking prior to publishing the articles. [The Tank - Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Furthermore, not one of the soldiers interviewed under oath in the investigation corroborated Beauchamp’s story."
An interview with the major who conducted the investigation.
Propaganda Analysis -- [Cannoneer4]
PSYOP Auxiliaries must use all available assets to collect the wide variety of opposing information and propaganda existing in media. Avoid being lured by the obvious propaganda and missing the more subtle and potentially effective propaganda being disseminated. The enemy may deliberately disseminate obvious propaganda to draw collectors away from other events or information. For example, an adversary may put a particularly obnoxious poster on a forum, chat room, or blog, while subtler and potentially more damaging disinformation, hoaxes, opposing information, misinformation and propaganda appears in your local newspaper. A proven method of collecting information is media analysis.
Media analysis is the structured, deliberate tracking and analysis of opponent and neutral media (TV, radio, Internet, and print). Properly performed media analysis, although time-consuming, can identify trends and become predictive. To be truly effective, media analysis must be conducted on a daily basis. There are several good web sites that conduct media analysis as part of a push back against media bias.
Baghdad Neighborhood Watch -- [Weekly Standard]
Yesterday the New York Times released its report on the impact of the surge in Baghdad's disparate neighborhoods. The conclusions were not encouraging. Essentially, the Times found modest gains in the security of the city, but that much of the reduction in violence could be explained by the homogenization of the city's districts. Further, the paper found that the "city’s underlying sectarian dynamic" had not been fundamentally changed by the increase in troops. Allahpundit focuses on this quote:
New Vent: Checking up on The New Republic -- [Hot Air]
Michelle interviews The Weekly Standard’s Michael Goldfarb about the Scott Thomas Beauchamp scandal. We also stop by The New Republic’s office in Washington to see if editor Franklin Foer will talk with us.
Bush Mulls Bin Laden Offer to Convert to Islam -- [ScrappleFace]
(2007-09-07) — Just hours after the release of al Qaeda leader Usama bin Laden’s latest video message inviting all Americans to convert to Islam, U.S. President George said he would “seriously consider the offer, because it sure would simplify the war in Iraq.”
(Need more? The previous Dawn Patrol is here.)