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Heh. I just read that thing, too. Guess I've got some catching up to do!
Funny thing is, I'm just quibbling on the fringes of y'all's good analyses. You should see me "disagreeing" with paid experts when I say that it might be a good idea to not assume Iran's nuclear capability is ten years away, or to assume there is no cultural or religious significance to the Amahdinejad letter to Bush...
Even though Chap's favorite pastime is disagreeing with our Iran analysis, you have got to give the guy credit for citing a reference from March 1925.
I admit that I'm still chapped about John Murtha receiving the Profile in Courage Award. So, in an effort to define true courage, let me introduce you to 1st Lt. Raymond G. Baronie, who recently received "a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with combat “V” for valor for his courageous actions while deployed to Iraq."
According to command members, Baronie could have taken a much safer route to the end of his deployment. Instead, he regularly placed himself in harm’s way to better understand how he could be a more effective and efficient leader.
We also made our pilgrimage through the Barnes & Noble Bookstore. The Hubs likes to browse and I wanted to pick up Home of the Brave.
Since it is a newly released book, I went to the two fairly large "Just Released" tables, but the book wasn't among the 40 or so books displayed on either. So I went to the reference/help desk and asked a college-aged young man who looked the book up, walked me to the "Military History" shelves, and handed me a copy of the book -- shelved at the bottom under the "W" authors.
I said, "I was expecting this to be on the Just Released tables. After all," I continued, "it is a new release." To which he replied in a flippant and somewhat condescending manner, "Welllll, we can't fit all of them up there." To which I immediately and forcefully said (in a quite clearly "I am ticked" voice), "Well, THIS one should be there. It's about the Heroes who are protecting the rights of people to read and write what they want and to keep places like this in business." I didn't wait for a reply, but turned and walked off
Hoping you'll pick on the same bone and pass the bone around the blosphere... maybe we can make another small difference ...
For the first time in the 60-year political history of the Republic of Korea, the leader of the major opposition party has suffered a terror attack in broad daylight in the middle of Seoul. Grand National Party chairwoman Park Guen-hye suffered an 11-cm long cut to her face from ear to jaw at an election rally in Shinchon, Seoul, when a man in his 50s slashed her with a box cutter. The cut required over 60 stitches. A hospital official said if nearby major blood vessels had been cut, Park might have been in critical condition. She reportedly needs at least a week in hospital and will be unable to speak normally for several months. She will have to cancel all campaigning. Having to live with an ugly scar on, she must also have suffered a great psychological shock.
Park is the daughter of former Korean president Park Chung-hee an old school Cold War anti-communist who is widely credited for bringing the current prosperity to South Korea before being gunned down in 1979. His daughter has led the conservative opposition against the current leftist government of President Roh Moo-hyun which came to power in 2002 on a wave of anti-Americanism and pro-North Korean sentiment due to the now failed Sunshine Policy. Park is also a candidate for next year's presidential election in Korea.
The attackers have been caught and have been found to have links to the current ruling party Uri Party. This attack may possibly signal the beginning of the end of leftist rule in Korea as the Korean public is becoming increasingly more concerned about the street violence and leftist policies ushered in by the Roh Moo-hyun administration that has nearly fractured the US-ROK alliance, made huge concessions to the North Koreans for little in return, and has done nothing to improve the national economy.All done!
There are 4 forms of Jihad-the Heart, Tongue, Hand and Sword.
The first 3 forms are practiced by Mormon's and Fundamentalist Christians.(Christians gave up the 4th form at the end of the Crusades)
Blood Money - money paid for a wrongful death. 1/2 for woman and non-believers. If one checks insurance payouts for deaths in auto accidents the payouts for the primary wage earners are substantially higher than the payouts for non-wager earners.
IMHO - The translations are perjoritive. Blood Money sounds much more like something a blood thirsty heathen would pay rather than a "wrongful death payment" paid out by "Farmers Insurance Group".
In the extended entry, excerpts from those Saudi school textbooks.
FIRST GRADEAll done!
" Every religion other than Islam is false."
"Fill in the blanks with the appropriate words (Islam, hellfire): Every religion other than ______________ is false. Whoever dies outside of Islam enters ____________."
"True belief means . . . that you hate the polytheists and infidels but do not treat them unjustly."
"Whoever obeys the Prophet and accepts the oneness of God cannot maintain a loyal friendship with those who oppose God and His Prophet, even if they are his closest relatives."
"It is forbidden for a Muslim to be a loyal friend to someone who does not believe in God and His Prophet, or someone who fights the religion of Islam."
"A Muslim, even if he lives far away, is your brother in religion. Someone who opposes God, even if he is your brother by family tie, is your enemy in religion."
"Just as Muslims were successful in the past when they came together in a sincere endeavor to evict the Christian crusaders from Palestine, so will the Arabs and Muslims emerge victorious, God willing, against the Jews and their allies if they stand together and fight a true jihad for God, for this is within God's power."
"As cited in Ibn Abbas: The apes are Jews, the people of the Sabbath; while the swine are the Christians, the infidels of the communion of Jesus."
"God told His Prophet, Muhammad, about the Jews, who learned from parts of God's book [the Torah and the Gospels] that God alone is worthy of worship. Despite this, they espouse falsehood through idol-worship, soothsaying, and sorcery. In doing so, they obey the devil. They prefer the people of falsehood to the people of the truth out of envy and hostility. This earns them condemnation and is a warning to us not to do as they did."
"They are the Jews, whom God has cursed and with whom He is so angry that He will never again be satisfied [with them]."
"Some of the people of the Sabbath were punished by being turned into apes and swine. Some of them were made to worship the devil, and not God, through consecration, sacrifice, prayer, appeals for help, and other types of worship. Some of the Jews worship the devil. Likewise, some members of this nation worship the devil, and not God."
"Activity: The student writes a composition on the danger of imitating the infidels."
"The clash between this [Muslim] community (umma) and the Jews and Christians has endured, and it will continue as long as God wills."
"It is part of God's wisdom that the struggle between the Muslim and the Jews should continue until the hour [of judgment]."
"Muslims will triumph because they are right. He who is right is always victorious, even if most people are against him."
The 10th-grade text on jurisprudence teaches that life for non-Muslims (as well as women, and, by implication, slaves) is worth a fraction of that of a "free Muslim male." Blood money is retribution paid to the victim or the victim's heirs for murder or injury:
"Blood money for a free infidel. [Its quantity] is half of the blood money for a male Muslim, whether or not he is 'of the book' or not 'of the book' (such as a pagan, Zoroastrian, etc.).
"Blood money for a woman: Half of the blood money for a man, in accordance with his religion. The blood money for a Muslim woman is half of the blood money for a male Muslim, and the blood money for an infidel woman is half of the blood money for a male infidel."
"The greeting 'Peace be upon you' is specifically for believers. It cannot be said to others."
"If one comes to a place where there is a mixture of Muslims and infidels, one should offer a greeting intended for the Muslims."
"Do not yield to them [Christians and Jews] on a narrow road out of honor and respect."
"Jihad in the path of God -- which consists of battling against unbelief, oppression, injustice, and those who perpetrate it -- is the summit of Islam. This religion arose through jihad and through jihad was its banner raised high. It is one of the noblest acts, which brings one closer to God, and one of the most magnificent acts of obedience to God."
Mrs. G - RedState offers some analysis of the upcoming Murtha/Irey election.
According to campaignmoney.com
Jack "The Mouth" Murtha has $1.4 Million in Campaign Money
Diana Irey has $54 thousand.
On the plus side for Ms Irey she has hired Brabender Cox as her media firm. Which has an 80% win rate.
Personnally, I'm going to give till it hurts to send Mouth Murtha to the barn. I can think of no better message to send to Murtha and his Code Pink fans.
But is it really impossible to replicate Tal Afar and Sadr City elsewhere in Iraq? Are the troop requirements (usually placed in the hundreds of thousands) really so large as to make such efforts ridiculous to contemplate? The only way to answer these questions is to think through a battle plan with care. And when appropriate models are applied, the answer that emerges is likely to be: It is indeed possible to imagine a campaign that would bring more rapid success. No individual could devise such a plan alone, and the considerations that follow do not pretend to be a finished blueprint. Rather, they amount to a kind of opening bid, intended to invite a serious examination of the question.
...Vietnam veteran (Airborne!) and poet laureate of the milblogs endorses Diana Irey, John "Jack" Murtha's opponent in the upcoming elections.
Because if I could afford this - we'd have a Kewl Venue for the next Milblogger Conference!
Mebbe if we all chip in... build a Milblogger Resort and Retirement Community!
"Divide and conquer" would be a nice approach - but thus far they are inseperable.
The Hilton may have kicked out the wounded troops, but others have stepped up to the plate so they can still "step" up to the plate too.
The Italian Ambassador, Gianni Castellaneta, and his wife, Lila, heard about Fran O’Brien’s dinners through an Italian sponsor and offered to have the wounded servicemembers over to the embassy at some point as well, according to Shoshana Bryen, a member of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, another sponsor.
After Fran O’Brien’s lost its lease at the Hilton Hotel in Washington, the Italian ambassador and his wife decided to make good on their plans to welcome the wounded veterans, Bryen said Friday night.
“They have turned themselves inside out to be helpful,” Bryen said.
Bryen added that another hotel in downtown Washington, the Crowne Plaza at 14th and K streets, has since committed to continuing to holding the Friday dinners for wounded veterans. They have held two dinners so far since Fran O’Brien’s closed.
If we ever see Arab Militaries highlighting stuff like this, we'll know we've had a world-changing impact on the Region.
What does it mean to say "he cursed him out"? We use the phrase today only in a very informal way. We forget that it has an ancient, formal meaning.
Doc Russia calls down the formal curse on the head of a former Marine. This is something I have never seen done before, and hope never to see again.
The guy making the acusations is too much of a lightweight for Cpl Andoscia's remarks to be called "speaking truth to power" - so lets just call it "speaking truth to liar."
Both links offer essential commentary on counter-insurgency operations vis-à-vis Iraq today. At the heart of the matter, a debate over the best of two responses - US troops in numerous small FOBs "on the streets" in routine close contact with friend and foe or pooled in larger central bases from which they can strike as the need arises. The debate itself may be more media contrivance - or a slight misunderstanding/over-simplification of the topic. The military (strategic, tactical, logistical) issue is less "either/or" and more evolutionary - the pull back is the goal (actually just another step to full withdrawal) and the real question is how soon?
The New Yorker bit appears long, but after about the first two-thirds it devolves from thoughtful analysis and useful insight on strategy and tactics into the political (Theme: "hate hate Rummy arrogant hate Bush stupid hate hate" translated into New Yorker intellectual-ese), but you'll see the shift quite clearly and can simply exit out at that point if you so choose.
The focus of much of the useful discussion is Tall Afar, environs from which our own Buck Sargent reports, time permitting. The well known letter-writing mayor of that town is currently visiting the US.
Oh, yea. And this guy is a real hero to freedom.
He wants to be brave? Instead of having the actor do the Star Spangled Anthem, have him do the Muslim (Sunni or Shiite) call to prayer......then I will call him "brave."
Headline, the Washington Post: Violence Kills 3, Wounds 21 in Baghdad.
BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Roadside bombs and a drive-by shooting killed three Iraqis and wounded 21 on Sunday, a day after the formation of the country's new national unity government.I suspect if you studied 3 years of media headlines/lead paragraphs on Iraq you'd find that there are four main causes of death there:
American Soldiers and Marines
Real puppy-killers like Big Oil, the Israel Lobby, the media, neocons, even the American people. Notably absent however, is any mention of the Mullahs.
Of the seven American submariners to be awarded the Medal of Honor for service during WWII, only one survives -- Gene Fluckey, CO of USS Barb (SS 220). In addition to the Medal of Honor, he earned four Navy Crosses, a record of bravery that will likely never be surpassed. I posted some more information about this unique American late last year.
Word on the street is that Adm. Fluckey may be about to pass on. Please remember him and his family in your prayers during this trying time. In the meantime, we can remember him as he was during his "finest hours", as detailed in his MOH citation:
"For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Barb during her 11th war patrol along the east coast of China from 19 December 1944 to 15 February 1945. After sinking a large enemy ammunition ship and damaging additional tonnage during a running 2-hour night battle on 8 January, Comdr. Fluckey, in an exceptional feat of brilliant deduction and bold tracking on 25 January, located a concentration of more than 30 enemy ships in the lower reaches of Nankuan Chiang (Mamkwan Harbor). Fully aware that a safe retirement would necessitate an hour's run at full speed through the uncharted, mined, and rock-obstructed waters, he bravely ordered, "Battle station--torpedoes!" In a daring penetration of the heavy enemy screen, and riding in 5 fathoms of water, he launched the Barb's last forward torpedoes at 3,000-yard range. Quickly bringing the ship's stern tubes to bear, he turned loose 4 more torpedoes into the enemy, obtaining 8 direct hits on 6 of the main targets to explode a large ammunition ship and cause inestimable damage by the resultant flying shells and other pyrotechnics. Clearing the treacherous area at high speed, he brought the Barb through to safety and 4 days later sank a large Japanese freighter to complete a record of heroic combat achievement, reflecting the highest credit upon Comdr. Fluckey, his gallant officers and men, and the U.S. Naval Service."All done!
Maybe we should post some warnings...
This from CNN Entertainment
Army: HBO documentary could trigger stress disorder
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Army surgeon general is warning that the HBO documentary "Baghdad ER" is so graphic that military personnel watching it could experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.
In a memo dated May 9 and obtained by CNN, Lt. Gen. Kevin Kiley said the film "shows the ravages and anguish of war."
"Those who view this documentary may experience many emotions," he said in the memo. "If they have been stationed in Iraq, they may re-experience some symptoms of post-traumatic stress, such as flashbacks or nightmares."
Maybe they should have thought of this (a) before they allowed the filming, and (b) before premiering it at 22 Army facilities?
IKiley, who has watched the film with senior Army officials, said it is "an extremely graphic and moving look at how we care for severely wounded service members."
"This film will have a strong impact on viewers and may cause anxiety for some soldiers and family members."
But the Army is supporting the effort... It premiers tomorrow and replays on Memorial Day (at least it's a limited showing.)
Army officials said they fully support the film and note the Army gave the filmmakers access to the hospital. But privately they said it is so graphic that senior leaders do not want to turn Monday's premiere in Washington into a social occasion so many will not be attending, preferring to let the limelight fall on the military personnel.
After screening the film, officials said they are aware that some may use it to make an anti-war message.
DemocracyNow -- and the ever flailing Ms Goodman -- has a different take...saying the Army is not supporting the effort (ah, how could that be true if they are premiering it at 22 military facilities?) never mind.
But the Washington Post story seems to cover both sides -- and the Pentagon's response to such stories...All done!
Tal Afar Mayor Najim Al Jibouri makes his first visit to the United States. On his agenda, a speech to soldiers and their families at Ft. Carson, Colorado. What a speech it was.
COLORADO SPRINGS - An Iraqi mayor stood before troops lined up on the lawn at Fort Carson on Friday morning and said only two words in English.
But those two words brought the crowd to its feet.
It was a telling gesture from Tal Afar Mayor Najim Al Jibouri, who spoke for about 20 minutes in his native tongue praising the 3rd Armored Cavalry for saving his city from certain ruin.
Read the entire article here.