Aug 31, 2009

Games like Milton-Bradley 

Why post this? Like I need a reason...

For my money, the best line comes right at the 4 minute mark. I did a mini review of the D.I. here.

State Dept. reaches into hat, pulls out rabbit 

With the 70th Anniversary of the opening of WWII looming, as of one week ago the best America could produce to send to Poland for the memorial service was William Perry, the Clinton-era SecDef (one of 3, and not even the longest serving one, at that) . Seriously, fellas? An event featuring no less than 14 heads of state, to include Germany and Russia, and the best you pull out was William Perry? Somebody - taking a short pause from their rectal-cranial inversion syndrome - appointed retired Marine Commandant and current National Security Adviser James Jones to head up the American delegation.

This is a smart choice for a whole host of reasons, not the least of which being yet ANOTHER of Jones' prior jobs as the head of US European Command and the relationships he obviously would have developed in that capacity. In fact, if you aren't going to send POTUS hisself, Jones is
practically the obvious choice. Yet he was not named until less than three days out from the ceremony, after a hopelessly useless figure was initially announced, thereby making sure the Poles were good and agitated. Smooooooth...

Aug 26, 2009

'The Lion of the Senate' 

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Yeah, right...

You never want to speak ill of the dead, but in some cases... well... it's almost obligated. That being the case: so long Teddy. Mary Jo Kopechne* could not be reached for comment, but as far as I'm concerned, you were a Grade-A douche. (The counter-punch to that particular episode of douchiness is here. Check out the headline on that paper, by the way... that's right Teddy K was a douche on an international scale since before we put men on the moon.)

PS - I totally disagree with Michelle. If "not now," when? If you want to call me a monster for getting my shots in before he goes under the dirt, go ahead. But I intend to never speak the man's name again after this (if at all possible) and the history of damage that Teddy K has inflicted upon the country as he tried to implement an ever increasing amount of government control over everything is too great to go completely unspoken. "Not now"? What sense is there in talking about him later? As of right this second, I'm done with him.

*Fun fact: Mary Jo Kopechne was the #1 search on Google by 1PM EST today. Teddy's legacy is secure.

Aug 17, 2009

"Come on, you sons-o'-bitches! Do you want to live forever?" 

This extraordinary feature of combat is depicted in movies in bold, heroic colors, without depth or explanation. Most leaders in the military, however, spend a lifetime trying to understand its complexity. Our pursuit usually starts at Thermopylae, a mountain pass in northern Greece where, in 480 B.C., 300 Spartans faced the entire Persian army. Leonidas, the Spartan king, had a choice: retreat, and live to fight another day, or stand. When the Persian king offered, "We do not want your lives, only your arms," Leonidas answered, "Molon labe" -- come and get them. They held out for seven days, fighting until their weapons broke and then, Herodotus says, "with bare hands and teeth." Their spirit lives whenever wounded soldiers ask to return to their units rather than rotate home or sentries rest their chins on the point of a bayonet to stay awake so others sleep safely.

Before going into harm's way, we reflect on this remarkable aspect of combat. Using its history as a source of pride and inspiration, we make this bond part of our ethos. We are humbled to follow, yet hopeful to live up to, those who have gone before -- as at Belleau Wood in 1918. When his men were being cut to pieces by German machine guns, Marine 1st Sgt. Dan Daly, already the recipient of two Medals of Honor, charged the guns shouting, "Come on, you sons-o'-bitches! Do you want to live forever?" More than just history, this retelling to each new generation becomes a pledge: Although some will die, those who follow will keep the faith by keeping our memory -- a promise of immortality that asks, instead, "Don't you want to live forever?"
Once you've experienced it, the memory never leaves -- even after those fair winds and following seas have taken you as far as they did Sen. Mike Mansfield. After serving two years in the Marines as a teenager, he spent 34 years in Congress (the longest-serving majority leader ever) and 11 years as ambassador to Japan. He died in 2001 at age 98. His tombstone in Arlington National Cemetery bears seven words: "Michael Joseph Mansfield, PVT, US Marine Corps."

Aug 6, 2009

Well, thank God THAT'S over with 

I wonder if this will get me a different ribbon next time I deploy?
It's official. The U.S. is no longer engaged in a "war on terrorism." Neither is it fighting "jihadists" or in a "global war."

President Obama's top homeland security and counterterrorism official took all three terms off the table of acceptable words inside the White House during a speech Thursday at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank.

"The President does not describe this as a 'war on terrorism,'" said John Brennan, head of the White House homeland security office, who outlined a "new way of seeing" the fight against terrorism.

The only terminology that Mr. Brennan said the administration is using is that the U.S. is "at war with al Qaeda."
Fortunately for us, al Qaeda is the ONLY terrorist organization in the world now, apparently. So if that's truly the case, then I guess we must've been doing something right all this time then... Yeaaa, us!...

Aug 2, 2009

Spike comes home 

Remains of the first American lost in the 1991 Persian Gulf War have been found in the Anbar province of Iraq after a nearly 20-year search, the U.S. Navy said Sunday.

The Armed Forces Institute of Pathology has positively identified the remains of Captain Michael "Scott" Speicher, whose disappearance has bedeviled investigators since his jet was shot down over the Iraq desert on the first night of the 1991 war.

DOD Press release here.

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