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.
Sounds of Freedom -- [Armed and Curious - in Iraq]
...What makes it the sound of freedom is the sound that was missing. Gunfire. You didn’t hear any explosions or weapons being discharged at all. We heard yelling and cheering. That’s a good piece of what democracy is about in my opinion. It is the victory of voices over guns and the clash of ideas over the clash of arms.
Finding Inspiration in Tears of Joy -- [Armed and Curious - in Iraq]
This is a different Iraq than the one I left two years ago in so many ways. I am constantly surprised this trip when something subtle points to such an obvious change. It is often only much later that you recognize the measure of what you have witnessed and often it’s the absence of things such as explosions and small arms fire in the distance that point to the progress having been made.
Iraqi Military Academy Graduation
A little photo essay of the US military around the world... -- [John of Argghhh!]
Iraqi children gather around U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Haggard for a group photo during Youth Outreach Day on Contingency Operating Base Speicher in Tikrit, Iraq, July 12, 2008.
SoI Members Receive Pay, Confirm Resolve -- [MNF-I]
PATROL BASE JURF AS SAHKR — More than 1,500 members of the Sons of Iraq program met Coalition forces, July 10 - 15, to discuss current security issues in Jurf as Sahkr and receive their monthly pay.
KFC in Fallujah
Marines visiting a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant. Scenes include troops walking inside the restaurant and KFC workers preparing and frying chicken and french fries.
Decrypting a Fraser Manuscript for Posting -- [Fraser - in Iraq]
There's a little downtime here, so I thought it would be interesting to post an example of an original manuscript as it comes off the teletype from the warrior out in the land that shall not be mentioned.
A Plan to kill everyone. -- [One Marine's View - in Iraq]
A sign on the door leading out of India Company’s Combat Operations Center says “Have a Plan to Kill Everyone You Meet.” For a fraction of second I thought it might be some kind of joke. But I was with the Marine Corps in Fallujah, and it wasn’t a joke.
I asked Captain Stewart Glenn if he could explain and perhaps elaborate a bit on what, exactly, that sign is about. “It’s pretty straightforward,” he said rather bluntly. “It means exactly what it says.” Welcome to counterinsurgency.
Al- Asad, Iraq -- [THE CI-ROLLER DUDE]
From the Soldier side: To continue with my adventures in Iraq... lets see I think our last story had us on a trip to Fallujah again. From there we took a very long convoy to Al Asad air base... We rode with the Navy See Bees again. The bad part of their convoys were they usually had to escort some old POS Iraqi gravel trucks that could only go about 25-30 MPH.
So you got a big A... knife... -- [THE CI-ROLLER DUDE]
...After so much of this, I asked him one day what his MOS was. He was a cook. He had no "Special Forces" patch or jump wings or anything else...so my next question was when did he work for Special Forces.... uhhh, then he got kind of flustered. (usually an indication of a person not telling the truth.) Finally he came up with: "Well, I served some of them food one time."
I haven't quite figure the IZ out yet... -- [Miserable Donuts - in Iraq]
OK, so I have been here almost a week, in the International Zone ("IZ" or what used to be called "the Green Zone"). It is an odd situation, to be sure.
Afghanistan: Not enough troops -- [Military Watch]
Tragically, that's the lesson of the battle Sunday during which insurgents overran a joint U.S.-Afghan base and killed nine Americans, among others.
U.S. troops are spread out thinly across eastern Afghanistan, in accordance with the counterinsurgency doctrine espoused by Gen. David Petraeus, the current U.S. commander in Iraq who will become chief of all U.S. forces in the region this fall.
That approach, along with other factors, has helped quell the violence in Iraq. But it is risky, as the attack on Sunday shows. And it requires many, many more boots on the ground.
Troop Surge for Afghanistan? -- [The Captain’s Journal]
Similar to the opposition to the surge in Iraq, the chorus of voices calling for a military stand-down in Afghanistan are growing. There is the classical “we can’t win” approach, analogous to the “insurgencies cannot be beaten” meme (regardless of the fact that the insurgency has essentially been beaten in Iraq). Then there is the “we must educate the extremists out of there extremism” approach.
US Pulls Out of Wanat; Base in Nuristan Not First to be Breached There -- [A Battlefield Tourist]
Leaving behind a handful of weapons for the Afghan security forces, paratroopers with Chosen Company, 2/503 have withdrawn from the area of Want, Nuristan Province, as they prepare to leave the country for a planned rotation.
As the Americans pulled out, Afghan forces withdrew to Kunar Province allowing militant fighters to move back into a town that will go down in history as one of the deadliest for US troops in this central Asian country.
Taliban/AP Use Same Cameraman? -- [Jawa Report]
A "new" video released by the Taliban's Ummat Studios shows two alleged American spies kidnapped in Afghanistan and then taken over the border and murdered by Pakistani Taliban sympathizers last month. The two were accused of helping the U.S. in an airstrike in Damadola, near the border, which killed several Taliban leaders. The crowed shouted Allahu Akbar.
However, the video released by Ummat Studios is identical to video released earlier by the Associated Press.
...I'm leaning toward #1: the Taliban simply stole an AP video then added some background music, some subtitles, and their own watermark. There's some other evidence on the video that suggests this (you'll spot it pretty quickly as soon as I get the thing up at Liveleak).
Marines in Helmand Speak
US Marines in Afghanistan speak about some of their experiences.
Say Goodbye to Afghanistan -- [The Satirist at War - in Afghanistan]
To all my friends and family who supported me and the other Sky Soldiers through this long ordeal away from the country and culture we hold dear: Thank you. I'm coming home.
Pilots for 9/11 Truth -- [BlackFive - Pinch]
Time to shine a light in the corner of the "9/11 Truth Movement" and watch the cockroaches scurry.
The aviation part of this wacky "9/11 Truth" soup sandwich is a coterie of idiotic moonbats who call themselves "Pilots for 9/11 Truth". Led by the head moonbat, a supposed former airline pilot named Rob Balsamo (below), this Rob_balsamob_4_220_jpg80 group of beyond-the-fringe whack-jobs claim the US government was behind the 9/11 aircraft attacks on the WTC and that the attacks on the Pentagon and the crash of United 93 in Shanksville never happened as advertised.
The Truth about March 14 -- [Michael Totten]
The “March 14” movement is a political vehicle for Lebanon’s liberals, democrats, free-market capitalists, human rights activists, and those who want an exit from the seemingly endless war with the “Zionist entity.” Unfortunately, that is not all it is. It’s also a political vehicle for hard-line Sunni Arab Nationalists and other political retrogrades who only oppose Hezbollah and the Syrian Baath regime because they hate Shias and Alawites as much as they hate Jews.
Victory As A Matter Of Opinion -- [Strategy Page]
Because al Qaeda doesn't have any real estate to call its own, much less a capital city to capture, determining who wins, or is even winning, the war on terror has always been subject to interpretation
...Here al Qaeda openly declared they were fighting a major war with their infidel enemies, and now just as openly admit they were beaten. Then there are the opinion surveys throughout the Moslem world showing the steady decline of al Qaedas popularity since 2003.
Law & Jihad with Andrew McCarthy -- [NRO]
Is there a way to balance war and the “rule of law”? McCarthy says simply that those we capture must be given “enough” justice — in particular so we can continue to maintain the cooperation of our allies — while the idea must be to win the war. And how well has the Bush administration performed at both administrating the law and prosecuting the war?
The latest in counterterrorism efforts: the Luxury Pod -- [Hot Air - Ed Morrissey]
How has the Pentagon spent counterterrorism funds? The Washington Post reports on one project funded through the CT appropriation that will certainly help keep America safe from al-Qaeda — or at least keep Air Force commanders comfortable during an attack. The Luxury Pod, officially called “comfort capsules”, contain plush chairs and full-length mirrors, both apparently necessities for top brass who cannot abide flying Coach:
Killing Bush = Art -- [Jawa Report]
What passes for art these days? Killing President Bush. No joke. An Iraqi professor at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Wafaa Bilal, is now displaying his latest 'work': a video game where the player hunts down and kills President Bush. Sound familiar? That's because it is. Wafaa's 'art' is simply a hack of a video game made by the Global Islamic Media Front GIMF), an online al Qaeda media support group, called...
Why Terrorists Quit: Gaining from al Qaeda's Losses -- [Counterterrorism Blog]
In recent months, there has been a spate of seemingly good news in the counter-terrorism arena, as former terrorist leaders and clerics have renounced their previous beliefs. Former Egyptian Islamic Jihad head Sayyid Imam al-Sharif (also known as Dr. Fadl), whose treatises al-Qaida often cited to justify its actions
False Reports of Jihadists "Quitting" or Abandoning Islamic Supremacism -- [Family Security Matters]
Americans should ask themselves how much of the American media became organizations with a focus to suppress the news when it comes to global Jihad.
Soldiers' Angels - Items Needed!! -- [Soldiers' Angel - Holly Aho]
The Soldiers’ Angels warehouses in NC & CA are a wee bit like Mother Hubbard's cupboard.... E-M-P-T-Y!
Please be aware that both warehouses send out MUCH needed items to the soldiers (male & female), wounded service members and all those in need.
Everyone understands the financial tightness going on now....but please... search your hearts and do what you can.
OIF and OEF Vets Outward Bound Opportunity -- [BlackFive]
the Sierra Club was generous is helping Outward Bound to exponentially grow its Veterans Expedition courses. Outward Bound seeks to serve Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans and still active service members to help them with their reintegration. All expenses are covered for up to 1,500 veterans over the course of three years. Registration is now open and Outward Bound is working diligently to get the word out to returning veterans about this great opportunity.
A warrior's reward: His own accessible home -- [Philadelphia Inquirer]
...From his wheelchair later, Robinson said, he wondered, "Can I have a job? Can I go to school? Can I have a family? Can I drive a car? Am I going to be able to eat normal? Can I get dressed?"
Yesterday, amid the din of banging hammers and whining saws, he and his wife, Sara, caught a glimpse of a brighter future as 100 volunteers held an old-fashioned house-raising in Florence.
The workers tomorrow expect to finish the exterior of the couple's dream home: a one-story house adapted to Robinson's needs, with wheelchair-accessible showers, roll-in closets, wide hallways and grade-level doorways.
David Hardt -- [Blog-ah]
...Some men have seen things that they can’t even describe, and when they describe it, they seem to instantly go back. When a man finally admits he has issues and takes that step forward, knowing damn well that there is a good chance that he is going to lose creditability or possibly his career, it is imperative that every mental health professional know that a good percentage of the men who are in front of you just didn’t wake up and come into your office. It took them a lot of time and possibly encouragement from loved ones.
Fort Bragg, NC protest -- [C.H.U.D. Busters]
Description of Attack: The controversial murder of SPC Touma in Fayetteville has sparked significant interest in the media, so a protest at the base could have been about any number of issues: PTSD, accountability of soldiers, women in the military, etc. As described by one local news outlet, there were "anti-military" protesters and counter-demonstrators consisting of Army wives. The "anti-military" moniker is a bit vague, and could not necessarily mean a CHUD outbreak. However, it turns out it was those fuckers
Wound vacs being tested on medevac flights -- [Soldiers' Angels Germany]
Wound vacs are a common sight in hospitals, but their use on long medevac flights could have big potential. Not only can they reduce the risk of infection and reduce healing time, but patients could also be spared the painful removal of gauze dressings upon arrival at Walter Reed or Bethesda from Landstuhl.
The way a wound vac works is that a special sponge is cut to the right size, placed in the wound, and then fitted with a plastic cover. A tube is attached to the cover which suctions fluid from the wound, keeping it clean.
Desertion Not As Fashionable As It Used To Be -- [Strategy Page]
...All of the services see desertion as a failure of someone to adapt to military life. For example, most of those who desert and say it's "because of the war" have never been in combat or been exposed to combat stress. They just don't want to be in the military anymore. It's long been a problem, even after the U.S. went all-volunteer in the 1970s.
Searching For SuperBoot -- [Strategy Page]
The U.S. Army, SOCOM (Special Operations Command) and the U.S. Marine Corps have turned to civilian hiking boots to replace the less sturdy combat boots the troops normally use. The troops need boots designed to survive use in Afghanistan. The Afghan rocks, and terrain in general, tear boots up. The U.S. Army desert boots, used without problem since their first major workout in the 1991 Gulf War, rapidly fell apart in Afghanistan.
Letter: Thanks for welcoming troops home -- [2TheAdvocate, LA]
Thank you, Baton Rouge, for the overwhelming turnout to welcome home the Louisiana National Guard 769th Engineer Battalion after a yearlong deployment to Iraq!
Taunton to welcome home Marines -- [Sommerset County Gazette, UK]
TAUNTON is to remember three Royal Marines killed in Afghanistan's Helmand province earlier this year.
...Mr Slattery said: "I want to ensure Taunton gives the Marines the homecoming they deserve in recognition of the sacrifices they have made in the course of their duty.
"Our soldiers risk their lives for the values we all hold dear and Taunton is proud to welcome them home.
Why I Feel Blogging By Military Members and Families is so Important -- [A Major's Perspective - in Afghanistan]
Blogging has given people the world over the ability to both stay in touch with family and to post their comments and perspective on current issues in the news. As Soldiers and Family Members of Soldiers I believe we have a very unique perspective on the current situation that we are in within the Global War on Terror. I firmly believe that we have a responsibility to the citizens of the nation to tell our story.
Not for Nothing, and Knowing It: A Special Thanks to Milbloggers (again) -- [View from the 8th Floor]
Whether it's because I want to have an informed opinion on proposed new strategies in Iraq or Afghanistan or Lebanon, or because I want to know how things are going where my "adopted" troops are deployed, or because I want more than a sound-byte about US casualties in Afghanistan, I turn to - without fail - milblogs.
Rather Calls Obama "Osama Bin Laden," Will Media Notice? -- [NewsBusters]
On this morning's "Morning Joe" on MSNBC, co-host Tiki Barber asked guest Dan Rather about his feelings regarding the recent Jesse Jackson imbroglio -- his "off mike" comments about Barack Obama. In the middle of praising Jackson, Rather referred to Barack Obama as "Osama bin Laden" -- and none of the four "Morning Joe" co-hosts reacted (nor did Rather).
Worshipping Media to Follow Obama on Iraq Trip -- [NewsBusters]
In a rare self admission, the media admits they are in the tank for Obama. IHT - Media stars will accompany Obama overseas
The Obama Iraq Documentary: Whatever the Politics Demand
TMG Editor's Note: One of my favorite videos that we should look at again in celebration of our sucess in Iraq
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