Welcome to the Dawn Patrol, our daily roundup of information on the War on Terror and other topics - from the MilBlogs and various 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.
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What happens when the next soldiers come in? -Assistance to Afghans -- [A World of Troubles - in Afghanistan]
I had a nightmare last night," a soldier from 2nd Platoon Able Co. told me, "that I was in Afghanistan."
He said it with a smile, the kind that comes from actually waking up in the dark and for the first few seconds thinking you might be somewhere other than your dirt bunker or plywood shack. But no, you're in Afghanistan, and the best thing to do is shake the cob webs, maybe take a Baby Wipes shower, chug a Rip It, get up and keep busy, whether it's burning trash, burning sh--, or ...
Death in the Morning -- [Free Range International - in Afghanistan]
Yesterday morning started with an event so senseless and evil that it is hard to describe. An American army patrol was moving through downtown Jalalabad when the villains detonated a bicycle mounted IED. This IED had no chance of even denting the paint job on an MRAP, but it did throw out a bunch of shrapnel, which killed one of the best diesel engine mechanics in town and wounded another 15 civilians - mostly children.
120 Days of Wind in Afghanistan -- [One Marines View - in Afghanistan]
It sweeps across Afghanistan's desert steppes and mountains at speeds that can top 100 mph, pummeling the country relentlessly with sand and dust.
Known as "The Wind of 120 days," the phenomenon is a blessing and curse for the millions of people who live in its path.
"We have a saying," said Bagram resident Mohammad Safa, 54. "If you eat poison little by little, eventually you'll get used to it."
Cold Water -- [Memorandum for the Record - in Afghanistan]
Spring has crashed upon us with all the fury of the so-called "Wind of 120 Days" that occupies this country through the summer. ... The winds have blown the Taliban out of their winter hibernations in gentler lands and into my lap. Work hours have extended into infinity and many times I find myself floating above my body, bewildered, as my corporeal self continues busily about its tasks.
I think we're winning. I hope we're winning. We're throwing every gram of flesh and blood and brain we can muster at the people of Afghanistan. We're wishing and hoping and begging for them to believe us, to believe in their new government, to believe in the beauty and future of their land instead of always the cheapness and futility of life.
Interview with Former Mujahedeen Commander -- [Afghanistan My Last Tour - in Afghanistan]
...The ANA Major and I discussed some tactics and military strategy used by the Mujahedeen against the Soviets. He confirmed when the Soviets would find an IED, at times they would gather around the explosive device for a group picture. Meanwhile one of his fighters would patiently wait for this opportunity and set off the explosive. The Major also explained how his Mujahedeen fighters would travel in small groups and ambush the Soviets, similar to the tactics used by the Taliban in attacking coalition forces today. The key to a successful attack was in planning. The Mujahedeen fighters would take advantage of the dense vegetation and hide among the trees so they could not be seen by the Soviet helicopters. They would also attack in early morning or evening when the helos were not present.
Major Shah and I also discussed the use of mines and IEDs as part of their arsenal. He explained
Corruption - My Last Straw -- [Afghanistan My Last Tour - in Afghanistan]
...While sipping our chai, he revealed some information about the ANA school supply distribution. Some of his soldiers participated on this mission. According to his soldiers, after the school supplies were loaded on the back of a truck, they made a detour before arriving at the school. The truck stopped at the ANA Brigade Surgeon's house and he had the soldiers off load several boxes of school supplies and a portion of the Beanie Babies. I couldn't believe what I was hearing! Here was a man I entrusted and to save face and keep our promises, I divided the school supplies and Beanie Babies for distribution to the village school. This is the same village where the ANA surgeon was born at. Now I find out he deprived his own people of goods only to enrich himself.
Putting the Seat Down -- [Rajiv Srinivasan - in Afghanistan]
The 6th Kandak Battalion Commander, LTC Abdul, has always been a mild-mannered and pleasant individual to deal with. He rarely panics or becomes rude. He's always treated me with the same respect that he'd show any of his direct coalition counterparts, even as a Lieutenant. So last week, when a winded ANA private came beating down the door of our Company CP yelling, "Commandan mekwahat ke bah shemah bebenat...The Commander needs to speak with you!" I felt a sense of urgency.
Wikileaks video is just cover for troops haters -- [This Ain't Hell...]
I read comments by Josh Stieber and his friend and I commend them for defending the soldiers (although it's half-hearted) however that's not what folks are thinking. Some anti-war types are using it as an excuse to condemn the troops. For example, someone sent me some screen shots of Dede Miller's Facebook Wall. For those of you who may not know, Dede Miller is Cindy Sheehan's sister.
On the Afghan Convoy -- [Starbuck ]
Most of you have heard about an incident in Afghanistan where American troops mistakenly shot a bus which contained civilians. One of my trusted friends in Afghanistan contacted me after the incident, and, not violating security procedures, noted that the American patrol had signaled for the vehicle to stop several times before firing at it.
While the deaths of civilians is certainly a tragedy, the US military's public relations people have been a little more quick to mitigate the PR effects than they were with last week's Apache video.
African-American expected to be named US Commander in Iraq -- [The Grio /AP]
The senior U.S. general in Iraq since 2008, Gen. Ray Odierno, will be succeeded by a leading Pentagon general at the end of the summer, military officials said Monday.
His replacement is Lt. Gen. Lloyd Austin, the staff director for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the officials said.
Military officials spoke about the change on condition of anonymity because the announcement has not been made.
Supporting Small, Local Government in Iraq -- [Sgt Stryker]
In the southern province of Dhi Qar in Iraq, the US military is continuing the mission of peace in Iraq by helping the small scale local government there. The Army's civil affairs teams and the United States Agency for International Development have got together to create a District Government Support Team. That team has solved a host of governing issues, helping to strengthen the democratic process at the city and village levels in Iraq.
Iraq's Forces Prove Able, but Loyalty Is Uncertain -- [New York Times]
Iraq's security forces, once mocked for deserting firefights and feared as a sanctuary for rogue death squads, crossed a crucial line of competence during the recent parliamentary elections: With little American help, they kept the nation overwhelmingly safe for voting. But as recruits return after the election to this dusty training outpost, the army and the police face new questions, not only about remaining gaps in ability, but also about loyalty in an uncertain period. More than a month after the election, there is still no new government, no certain leader that the security forces can look to - and few precedents for a peaceful transfer of power.
Iraq plans $1bn tourism development -- [AMEinfo]
The Iraqi ministry of tourism and the Wasit province investment commission have announced plans to build a $1bn tourism development near the Wasit capital city of Al-Kut, Meed has reported. Overlooking the Tigris River, the 500,000 square-metre Wasit Tourist City will include hotels, apartment blocks, private chalets, swimming pools, an amphitheatre, public gathering space and an amusement park for 2,000 people. The provincial government is relying on public and private funding at home as well as foreign investment from private developers abroad to fund the project, the magazine reported.
Terrorist Plot to Attack Najaf Shrine With Hijacked Airliners? -- [Iraq the Model]
A government delegation arrived in Najaf Wednesday afternoon to discuss the closure of Najaf's international airport. The delegation included the ministers of defense, transport and national security.
....Najaf's province council chief Fayid Shemmeri announced Tuesday that a protest against the closure of the airport has been postponed after PM pledged to find a solution for the situation. Other sources stressed that the airport was shut down because of threats of an attack on the Imam Ali shrine using a civilian airliner.
Officials say Iraqi forces foil 9/11-style plot -- [AP]
BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraqi security forces disrupted a 9/11-style plot by al-Qaida in Iraq to fly hijacked planes into Shiite religious shrines, Iraqi and U.S. officials said Wednesday....
Gates says video of U.S. helicopter attack in Iraq out of context -- [Los Angeles Times]
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates on Tuesday took a swipe at the website that released secret military video of a 2007 helicopter gunship incident in Iraq in which civilians, including two news agency employees, were killed. Gates said the videos released by the group WikiLeaks were out of context and provided an incomplete picture of the battlefield, comparing it to war as seen "through a soda straw." "These people can put out whatever they want and are never held accountable for it," said Gates, speaking to reporters aboard his plane en route to Lima, Peru, for a defense ministers conference this week. "There is no before and no after. It is only the present."
Comments about the Military -- [A Major's Perspective - in Afghanistan]
The derogatory comments made, focus around the general thought that all Soldiers are a bunch of murdering, rapist, thugs. One person even goes so far as to say that as long as the Military is comprised of the bottom 10% of society, what do you expect. This is the area of the article I want to rebuke.
U.S., Russia Finalize Plutonium-Disposal Accord -- [Voice of America]
The United States and Russia Tuesday finalized an agreement committing them to eliminate a total of 68 tons of weapons-grade plutonium. The deal was signed on the sidelines of the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington.
The two major powers had agreed in principle on the plutonium disposal project at the end of the administration of former President Bill Clinton.
Gates: No Iranian Nuclear Weapon for 'At Least a Year' -- [Voice of America]
Gates made the comment Tuesday on a flight to South America. He was responding to a declaration by a top Iranian nuclear official that Iran will join the "world nuclear club" within a month to deter possible attacks on the country.
Iran's Fars news agency quotes the deputy head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization as saying "no country would even think about attacking Iran" after it joins the nuclear club.
General David Petraeus Says It's Iran That Keeps Him Up at Night -- [U.S. News & World Report (blog)]
Petraeus is in charge of US command in 20 countries from Egypt to Pakistan, most notably the US efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. But as troublesome as those
Syria Gave Scuds to Hezbollah, U.S. Says -- [Wall Street Journal]
Syria has transferred long-range Scud missiles to the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollah, Israeli and U.S. officials alleged, in a move that threatens to alter the Middle East's military balance and sets back a major diplomatic outreach effort to Damascus by the Obama administration. Israeli President Shimon Peres on Tuesday publicly charged President Bashar Assad's government with transferring Scud missiles to Hezbollah's forces inside Lebanon. Syria and Hezbollah both denied the charges. But the allegations already are affecting U.S. foreign policy: Republicans pressed on Capitol Hill to block the appointment of a new American ambassador to Damascus, according to congressional officials. The White House said it was pressing ahead.
U.S. and Pakistan adapt their approach on divisive issue of North Waziristan -- [Washington Post]
So far, however, Pakistan has resisted U.S. appeals to turn its attention to the north, thought to be the base for separate groups of Taliban fighters, whose attacks are aimed primarily at American troops in Afghanistan. It is also thought to be the base for al-Qaeda's leadership. To launch a major campaign in North Waziristan this spring, as the Obama administration has proposed, would be impractical and strategically unwise, the Pakistani army says. U.S. officials have expressed frustration about Pakistan's reluctance. But a rare visit to the restricted region by two Washington Post reporters offered a fresh vantage point into Pakistani thinking, and it suggested that the two sides are trying to find common ground in addressing what Washington sees as the epicenter of the terrorist threat.
Holder says US still hopes to take bin Laden alive -- [AP]
Under fire from Republican critics, Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday the U.S. still hopes to capture and interrogate Osama bin Laden but expects the al-Qaida leader won't be taken alive.
The attorney general was on the defensive from the outset in his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, peppered with criticism of his handling of terrorism issues
Spiritual Warfare Needed - Todd Nicely - Updated -- [Blackfive]
Update April 13th, 2010: On the Friday of the Fifth Annual Military Blog Conference, MaryAnn of Soldiers Angels Germany went and visited Todd and his amazing family and delivered a Valour-IT laptop.
I have been relaying messages from his unit back to him through MaryAnn and Kassie and now he'll be able to stay in contact with his Marines in Afghanistan. He was concerned about his squad (as the leader).
Care Packages -- [A Major's Perspective - in Afghanistan]
A lot of people have written asking me what should they send in care packages to the Troops. And by no means is this a solicitation or the absolute answer. I've always felt kinda silly to be honest saying the typical things that Ive seen a million times before or stating the things that can't be sent. But, today I saw something that I had not seen talked about and I thought would be something useful to pass along.
Txt to Donate -- [SpouseBUZZ]
On the back of our AAFES flyer was an ad from M&Ms. They are having a vote for your favorite color sweepstakes but have added some covers for us military families.
The best part was seeing that they will be donating one dollar for each vote to the Fisher House.
In addition to voting on the website, you can text your favorite color to 41513. No charge from the candy company, but your service provider's regular messaging rates will apply.
Month of the Military Child -- [Soldiers' Angels]
Military Children of OIF/OEF veterans are eligible for a special gift during Month of the Military Child. Click here for details!
Thank You Soldiers -- [You Served]
Remember all those teachers indoctrinating our youth in the liberal ways of stupidity and supporting socialism and marxism? Remember the teacher at Langley High School that decimated the honor of our Iwo Jima veterans by putting a McDonalds sign on top of the famous flag-raising photo and inciting students to "discuss" it for a grade? Well, I've actually found a teacher who found an honorable way to recognize our troops with a positive song that understands the true sacrifice of our troops.
Phony charity busted -- [This Ain't Hell...]
TSO sends this link to an article about a California man who set himself up as a charity for Vandenburg AFB and claimed to be a Navy commander;
Are You Settled? -- [SpouseBUZZ - Andi]
It seems with military life, we're always "settling." I don't mean settling in the "settling for less" way. I mean settling in the sense that military life is ever-changing. Military families are always moving and settling in a new house and a new community. Settling into new friendships and relationships. Our spouses are often gone for lenghty periods of time so we settle into a routine when they leave. And when they return, we settle into another routine.
Settling. We do a lot of that.
Keeping The Home Fires Lit -- [Ranger-UP]
I was listening to the radio on the way to work the other day and I was reminded, yet again, of the brilliance of publicly funded studies. You know the ones; they cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and tell us things we already know, like $400K to discover that repeatedly hitting oneself in the head with a hammer can cause a headache. Duh.
This particular study highlighted the problems women (not all spouses; this one dealt with wives) experience while their husbands are deployed.
Each new fact was punctuated by an overdramatic pause by the reporter, like she was laying some kind of revelatory "There is no Santa" bombshell on a bunch of seven year olds.
30th Brigade returns home from Iraq -- [BlueNC]
The Guard's 30th Heavy Brigade Combat Team made history with its second deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom last year, becoming the first National Guard unit to deploy twice and have its own area of ...
A well-deserved welcome home for 30th Heavy Brigade -- [FayObserver]
Lusk said he knew his troops were glad to be home, trading the desert sand for pine tree pollen. "All our guys did a phenomenal job over there," Lusk said
National Guardsmen, commander get a governor's welcome home -- [Savannah Morning News]
Durham said his troops were excited to be home. "You can see it in their faces," he said. "At the end of the deployment, we were no longer busy
The Four Reasons I Never Respond to Emails about Veterans Today -- [The Burn Pit - MOTHAX ]
Every now and again someone sends me an irate email citing to Veterans Today and asking me to comment. I even had some emails occasionally from authors over there asking me questions. I refuse to answer their questions, and when I get an email asking me to comment on something they write, I kindly but forcefully refuse to do so. There are four main reasons for that, none of which has anything to do with politics. Because lately they have been engaging in some sort of vendetta with The American Legion, I thought I would lay out the case here why I refuse to discuss them, so that any further emails either from or about Veterans Today I will respond with a link to this post. I tried posting comments there to correct the record, but it simply does no good.
Without further ado, this is why I don't respond to them:
PLAying with Veterans' Jobs -- [The Burn Pit - Demophilus]
Executive Order 13502, signed by President Obama, went live yesterday. The Order directs federal agencies taking bids for government construction projects to accept only those from contractors who agree in advance to a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) that requires a union work force. How does that affect veterans you ask? Read on!
SOS - RED ALERT - New York Times About to Put American Troops in Deadly Peril -- [Big Journalsim/Breitbart]
I have just received word that the New York Times is preparing to go public with a list of names of Americans covertly working in Afghanistan providing force protection for our troops, as well as the rest of our Coalition Forces. If the Times actually sees this through, the red ink they are drowning in will be nothing compared to the blood their entire organization will be covered with. Make no mistake, the Times is about to cause casualty rates in Afghanistan to skyrocket. Each and every American should be outraged.
View from the top at 2010 MilBlog Conference -- [Army Live]
ShareA panel of military leaders, moderated by Jamie McIntyre, spoke this afternoon at the 2010 MilBlog Conference.
Price Floyd, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs (whew), joins this year's panel and is a great proponent for social media within the Department of Defense. Having just released DTM 09-026, opening up access to social media across the DoD network, Floyd speaks candidly about his encouragement of social media but also his awareness of the potential risks and the need to mitigate those. (My kind of guy - he understands the power but hasn't drunk the kool-aid).
Floyd also takes a very un-self-serving perspective on social media, noting that as a senior leader in the Department of Defense it opens up critical opportunities for two-way dialogue. The engagement works to not just inform the audience but also inform my understanding, said Floyd.
TR At the MilBlog Conference -- [Team Rubicon - Jake]
Team Rubicon member William McNulty, and Board of Advisors members Gary Cagle and Matt Burden enjoy a few beers at the MilBlog Conference in Washington, DC. Matt Burden is being awarded "Veteran's MilBlog of the Year" for his site BlackFive.net. It is extremely important that Team Rubicon continue to embrace the military and veteran community in order to ensure success in its missions.
Is the military starting to embrace new media? -- [The Burn Pit - MOTHAX]
This is going to be a two for the price of one post, since I have been holding off posting about my trip to the Army's Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) for a while, and I wanted to let folks know about the Military Blogging Conference I just attended in DC. Since the issues involved sort of overlap, figure I will do it all in one post.
Facebook Fan of MilBlogs - 2010 MILBlog Conference
Please keep linking your Milblog conference posts here and sharing your photos with us! Thanks
Milblog Conference after reaction report-- [Good Friends - Good Times]
For the past five years, military bloggers have formally congregated, either in Washington D.C., or Las Vegas, NV, to discuss the challenges and the future of military blogging, share ideas and best practices, and meet new people and further strengthen the bonds previously forged in the depths of cyberspace.
Hey, isn't that...?: Garry Trudeau -- [Washington Post]
Garry Trudeau quietly taking notes at the Military Bloggers Conference at the Ballston Westin on Saturday. Plaid shirt, khakis; recognized by a few other attendees. The "Doonesbury" cartoonist runs his own military blog, the Sandbox, and is said to draw inspiration for his own war-themed strips from others.
The 2010 MilBlog Conference -- [AW1 Tim's Blog]
MilBlogs are more than just journals and news sites. They have become a modern calling tree, something similar to what the old (and still around) ham radio networks were. MilBlogs have become a number of things, but to my mind, they have been the conduit through which soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines, both active and veterans, have been able to become a true extended family. Although it is still very much a work in progress, the seeds first planted have born fruit through any number of events. From showing a young, grieving widow that her loss and her words have had an impact far beyond what she could ever have imagined, to getting the word out for support for Team Rubicon to such an extent that it is demonstrable that Haitians are alive today that would not have survived had they been forced to endure the wait for typical NGO assistance.
The Military and DoD have also seen the impact that MilBlogs can have on troop morale, PR situations, and even in supporting and sometimes changing TRADOC, and various other missions, from procurement to training to supply to accessing and developing new media, to combating terrorism. MilBlogging is a tool, and how this form of social media is used, supported, and developed remains to be seen, but to date, it has had a great and positive impact in all parts of our military and national environment.
Saving Abel Rocks the Milblog Conference -- [Kiss My Gumbo]
So....here I am in DC with all my dearest Milblog friends in the world (a few were missing) and right in front of us, we have our own private Saving Abel performance (and I knew many of the songs already)!!! It was freaking amazing!
What I Saw at the Milblogger Conference -- [Sgt Mom]
...No one that I talked to at the conference had been mil-blogging longer than I had. I started in August, 2002 - the Dark Ages of mil-blogging - and am still at it, although I have drifted into wider circles than a strictly military/veteran focus. Which makes me rather famous in those circles, although no one asked for my autograph.
Pentagon Media Strategy- REVEALED!!! (Satire) -- [A Line of Departure]
While attending the 5th annual milblog conference this weekend a senior defense official slipped me a copy of a highly-unclassified PowerPoint slide outlining the Pentagon's internal strategy for dealing with the news media.
I am publishing the slide EXCLUSIVELY here at lineofdeparture.com to pull the curtain back on the techniques the powerful Pentagon Press Office uses to successfully influence news coverage.
Milblog Conference 2010: The Wrap-up -- [Starbuck]
After a great visit with the CNAS crew, it was off to the Milblog conference. I was quite amazed--when I told people I was attending a conference for milbloggers, most thought it was going to look like a Star Trek convention. Far from it. The event was attended by Admiral J.C. Harvey, Gary Trudeau (of Doonesbury), Jamie McIntyre, and featured a recorded message from General David Petraeus, who thanked milbloggers for their contributions.
MilBlog Conference 2010 -- [SWJ]
Military bloggers gathered in Arlington, VA this weekend for the 5th Annual Milblog -- Conference. The "Milbloggers" came from all walks of life: from veterans, to journalists, charity workers, even Gary Trudeau, the author of Doonesbury. The conference kicked off on Friday night with a panel entitled "It's a Marathon, not a Sprint", which chronicled the early days of the milblogosphere. Led by pioneers of milblogging
Mil Blog conference 2010 -- [Sandgram]
...My wife thinks that this conference was all about "playing," but in reality, it has become quite clear that those in positions of power are giving credence to the Mil Blog community just by the participation of such folks as Gen David Petraeus and MG David Hogg USA, Col Gregory Breazile USMC, and Admiral JC Harvey, Jr., Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, who has his own blog at usfleet-forces.blogspot.com. Since the military has now started embracing MilBlogs, I have stopped feeling like the cockroach hiding in the dark while I type away. Ha!!
I have to say that one of the most exciting things to happen for me this weekend was having the honor of meeting Major (Ret) Norman Hatch USMC, the combat cameraman who brought back the film from Iwo Jima, and also produced and won the Academy Award on his film about the Tarawa invasion.
Military Blogging Conference -- [Anne's Spot]
A summary of my observations are:
* Military bloggers are passionate, as you would expect.
* Military bloggers who began blogging in 2002 and 2003 were leaders and drove a grass roots movement that led to identifying military bloggers in a loosely structured group, but tightly connected and networked individuals. The blog sites are aggregated on the Military Blogging web site.
* Thousands of non-profit organizations serve military, soldiers, veterans, and families.
* Throughout this community of military bloggers, they all have a sense of responsibility toward families.
The 2010 (Fifth Annual) Military Blog Convention - Part I -- [BlackFive]
First of all, I would like to personally thank Andi of SpouseBuzz and the great folks at Military.com and Milblogging.com for yet again exceeding expectations and hosting/managing the Fifth Annual Military Blog Conference.
I would also like to mention that USAA went above and beyond, as a sponsor and they donated to Soldiers Angels and Homes for Our Troops - two fantastic organizations (more on that later). I have been a member/customer of USAA for more than 20 years. They rock!
MilBlog Conference Update. -- [Rebellion University]
The 5th Annual Milblog conference is in the can. My attendance there this year caused me to reflect on a few things that are interesting to me, and so I write them here.
The face of the Milblogging landscape is changing. Not for the better. The Blog, and its specialized cousin, the Milblog, is, at its core, journaling by people doing something that interests them and writing about it, for the interest of others.
There is a word -- [From My Position...]
There is a... woman (definitely not a lady) here who is a member of IVAW. If you're interested, that's Iraq Veterans against the war. Naturally, she is attending the milblog conference to gain understanding of all the good things our service members are doing in theater. If we're lucky, she'll even burn a flag or two while she's here.
Tribal Engagement Workshop -- [Small Wars Journal]
The Tribal Engagement Workshop, cosponsored by Small Wars Foundation, the U.S. Joint Forces Command Joint Irregular Warfare Center, the U.S. Marine Corps Center for Irregular Warfare, the U.S. Army / U.S. Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Center, and Noetic Group, was conducted 24-25 March 2010 at Gari Melchers Home and Studio, Fredericksburg, Virginia.
...This TEW Summary Report captures the insights and opinions (agreement & disagreement) of the group. The final version incorporates many revisions from participant comments on a 4/1 draft for a more accurate summary. However, no 6 page summary can represent the expertise of the group or the many considerations for tribal engagement or other bottom-up approach to Afghanistan. Additional commentary from the participants is being integrated into a web-based resource presenting amplifying information to be perused by future practitioners who are interested in more detail, as conflicting as it may be. That product is being developed now with the input received to date, and will be linked in to this page shortly...
Republican websites pledge allegiance to flag -- [Politico]
House Republicans are far more likely to emblazon their campaign websites with the American flag than their Democratic rivals, according to a new study.
A comprehensive review of House reelection websites by the University of Minnesota's Smart Politics blog found that GOP incumbents are 36 percent more likely to incorporate Old Glory into the banner of their page, with nearly half of all House Republicans positioning the Stars and Stripes as the main image on their website. Just a third of their Democratic counterparts prominently place the flag as a backdrop, according to a survey of 368 campaign websites.
Robert Gibbs Considers Different White House Role -- [CBS News]
Robert Gibbs is tired of being White House press secretary and has his eye on the job held by senior White House strategist David Axelrod if and when Axelrod leaves that job to focus on President Obama's reelection campaign.
At least that's the portrait painted by a Gibbs profile in the Washington Post, which suggests the press secretary is far more invested in his private role as an adviser to the president than his public one dealing with the media.
Today's Medal of Honor Moment for 14 April -- [Castle Argghhh!!!]
There are eight Medals awarded for actions on this day in our military history. Five from the Civil War, two from World War II, and one from Operation Iraqi Freedom. Two awards are posthumous.
Remembering Eagle Flight - Annual Memorial on BlackFive -- [Blackfive]
"They came to save us, and to give us dignity. Their sacrifice will remain in the minds of our children for the rest of their lives. We will teach their names to our children, and keep their names in our books of history as heroes who gave their lives for freedom." - Kurd Sheik Ahmet, April 17th, 1994 memorial service in Zakhu, Iraq.
(Need more? Dawn Patrols Archives are here.)