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June 10, 2005

Hee! Love it!

Colonel Massengale, call your office - there's a message from a Mr. Baggins for you...

Extra credit if you have any idea what I mean.

H/T to the Heartless Libertarian (who had an eaaarly day today).

Bad day in the 'hood.

Okay. This is *not* work safe if you don't work in a Law Enforcement, Military, or similar office. Even then if you are in an office with sensitive souls, it's probably not a good idea. I stuck the rest in the extended entry to reduce it's Google exposure.

Update: I guess I haven't been clear as people keep linking to this without reading all the way down... Based on further analysis - I do not believe this video shows what it purports to show. I believe as Mike (in the comments) does - it's 'varmint hunting' all right - only the varmints are small furry critters like rock 'chucks, prairie dogs, etc. They ain't human - not being hit by something like a .50 anyway.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

by John on Jun 10, 2005 | Global War on Terror (GWOT)
» The Gun Line links with: The M107 .50 Caliber Sniper Rifle.
» links with: Tax Dollars At Work--Barrett .50 Sniper Rifle Edition

Just peeking around...

New stuff added through the day, btw.

Geoffrey, at Dog Snot Diaries, offers his response to people asking about why he needs more than one gun... and points us to Jeff at Alphecca who elaborates... I agree with Jeff, though I find his taste in modern firearms to be *terribly* declasse. I would add to his list - the history. Of course, with his morbid interest in the new and common, that wouldn't be one of his reasons... If it ain't 50 years old or older... who *does* need more than one of those? Snerk.

The answer to the puzzlers from yesterday. The top headstamp is a Czech 7.62x45 round - the original chambering of the CZ52 rifle. Mine (top rifle, the other is a Hakim) is in that caliber, hence I have a bunch of that ammo. Some of the sharper-eyed and knowing among you noted the corrosion. Laquered-steel casing, stored badly before I got it. I hadda buy 3000 rounds to get 1500 rounds I considered safe to shoot (hey, I spent $100, it was *still* a deal). The ammo is in stable storage now, and I clean it up and touch up the laquer as I get a chance. No, I wouldn't consider any of this ammo to be reloadable.

The second headstamp is that of the M82 Primer, in this case made at Lone Star Army Ammunition Plant. The M82 is used as the initiator for 155mm (and formerly, the 8 inch) howitzers. It has a black powder load. If you look at the second photo, the "teeth" are the petals that ICW the wad and some laquer, seal the primer. So yes, Virginia, we still use black powder in our artillery to this day... Boquisucio got it first, in two tries. Phil, a young Redleg currently serving in-theater with D Btry 2/180 FA came in second - but was correct straight up on his first try. Geoff from Australia came in third - also on his first try! Given time differences, first second and third don't really matter. If I were in a 'declare a winner' mode - nod goes to Phil - for a complete answer, with nomenclature, Geoff 2nd, with a correct id of artillery primer, and Boq 3rd, cuz he hadda try twice... the others who tried, thanks! You timid souls who didn't even try - fooey!

Ry asks, What Jet Fighter are you?

I'm an F-15. I can live with that.

What military aircraft are you?

F-15 Eagle

You are an F-15. Your record in combat is spotless; you've never been defeated. You possess good looks, but are not flashy about it. You prefer to let your reputation do the talking. You are fast, agile, and loud, but reaching the end of your stardom.

Personality Test Results

Click Here to Take This Quiz
Brought to you by quizzes and personality tests.

Update: Given the fact that *everyone* I know has shown up as an F-15, a phenom Fuzzbear Lioness noted as well (and this includes office mates not appearing in this film) I decided to run some tests. The results are in the extended entry.

This is one hard-ass Pizza Guy!

Jon U - we honor your courage and mourn your passing. (see for login data)

Jon U certainly didn’t think about his own safety when he heard Ruth Peck’s screams on the afternoon of May 20 as she struggled with a man who wrenched her purse away from her in a busy Olathe parking lot.

The full article is here.

I left the following entry in the guestbook:

It is the actions of men and women like Jon that mark the difference between civil society and anarchy. The Police cannot, and should not, be everywhere, everywhen... we as citizens must actually set the tone.

While this is a tragedy for Jon, his family, his friends, and Lord knows this wasn't the outcome anyone sought - society is better for the fact that there are people who will *act* and do so in a principled manner.

Thank you Jon, for being a shining example.

God bless and godspeed.

Go - add your own.

CAPT H reports the new Canadian rifle, the C7A2 is now in service with Her Majesty's Northern Hordes.

Ry sends along this bit of Coast Guard news.

Castle Chief of Security Sergeant B's wife, Kodiak Momma 6, was injured in an auto accident yesterday. Go give her some well-wishing! That's an order!

Zoot alors! Much is made clear now! Frenchmen are certainly sensitive fellas!

Castle Philosopher Kat has a great post on Women in Combat. I don't agree with her - but I'll let you read her post and the comments to see where I disagree.

Sagacious Blonde ALa has a hair-raising post for you.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

by John on Jun 10, 2005 | General Commentary | Gun Pics | Machine Guns | Rifles
» Righty in a Lefty State links with: Friday Links
» There's One, Only! links with: I'm a bomber!

June 09, 2005

We're sorry, Jonah.

Blog-father Jonah Goldberg's father Sidney passed away last night. Our prayers are with Jonah, Lucianne, and the family.

We're glad Jonah took the time to be with his Dad as the end approached. By all accounts, Poppa Goldberg was a gem of a man.

Frog Fighter Pilot Watch -or- Test Question: "Who takes war more seriously?...

This is Combat Edge...the US's answer to G-LOC (G-induced Loss of Consciousness).

This is the French version. I thnk they should stick to the Airbus flight envelope--matches their Warrior Ethos.

HT: The Corner

FCS. Allies. Trust. Money.

Reader Alert - Boring Geeky Army Stuff Ahead.

Graphic depicts how the network will link different Future Combat Systems. All pics in this post are from the US. Army.

Torgau-05. Ry sent me a an article showing a different take on Torgau-05 than the Armed Forces News Service article I linked to two days ago.

The reason I like the article Ry sent is it gives me a platform to discuss aspects of how Transformation is affecting our ability to operate with allies.

It's not a matter of standardizing military manuals. This was done 10 years ago in preparation for joint peacekeeping operations in Bosnia, where a Russian brigade was part of a joint U.S.-Russian division. But its operations in Afghanistan and Iraq have made clear that the U.S. Army is conducting a new kind of war in which the main weapon is information, an area where the United States is the uncontested leader. Interoperability no longer means that Russian tank crews can operate an Abrams tank, but that they can access the information network used to direct operations. This means having communications systems and computer technology for receiving intelligence and orders from satellites and unmanned spy planes and specialists capable of evaluating the data in real time. Without this, you stand a good chance of being hit by "friendly fire."

As I've mentioned before, a couple of years ago I worked ABCA exercises (the America-Britain-Canada-Australia Alliance). One thing about the Brit Army - they were far more comfortable working with the Marines than they were with the US Army - and while some of that was driven by cultural issues - the Brits are organized and used a lot like we do the Marines, and, well, they have some aspects of seeing themselves as peers to the Marines while the Army are slighty retarded younger brothers striving to show that we are too grown up (heh, let the snarks begin)... but the real issue is one of the US Army is so automated vice the Marines. The Brits are frankly just more comfortable hooking into Marines than they are the Army. They are (justly) concerned that the Army is so wired and used to being wired that, in effect, we are actually possibly *more* likely to engage a Brit formation in the wrong place at the wrong time because we are so used to the situational awareness we have from our systems they are concerned we will shoot first and ask questions later.

An artist's drawing of the FCS command and control vehicle.

Another problem comes from the difference in battlefield perception. These are legitimate concerns (and the Army has not yet fully mastered the vast volume of information we have access to).

It's even worse with nations that have little to no, or, if they have it - incompatible systems. The huge breadth and scope of what the US is trying to do, coupled with our development cycle (and, frankly, abysmal configuration management) makes it very difficult for other nations to keep up. Which nicely brings us to *this* piece of information.

We may open the FCS system to Britain and Australia (and I bet Canada, too).

Artists drawing of the FCS Infantry Fighting Vehicle.

If you aren't stunned by boredom or a huge attack of giveashititis - the rest (with more pics) is in the Flash Traffic/Extended Entry.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

by John on Jun 09, 2005 | Observations on things Military
» The Gun Line links with: Modern/Future Warfighting
» Quotulatiousness links with: Boring, geeky army stuff

Oh, Krep...

My respect for the American Soldiers and Marines--fighting and dying for their countrymen, now-free Iraqis, the Middle Eastern individual who yearns to be free, and humanity as a whole--knows no bounds.

Yet it increased when I heard this.


Because they keep fighting as fiercely as the first day of the war, despite the appalling statements people, who are proported to be their representatives, make.

What Rangel said was so repulsive it was breathtaking. Of course, what do I know, being a White Male who thinks like the rest of the Republican Borg Collective?

The Democratic Party, and many of its followers, have rendered themselves incapable of understanding what evil is. When that happens, the likelihood that you will experience it increases dramatically. Lucky for us, the American people and their sons and daughters in faraway places, still understand that.

P.S. For those of you wondering where I am, I'll back brief you as soon as I can. Put simply, I'm living the Nike ad...just doing it. Will elaborate soonest. Cheers.

Boquisucio - this one's for you!

Okay - aside from Boquisucio, who cannot play this round - can anyone identify this headstamp?

Okay, Boq - you can play for this one.

Who can identify this one? First right answer gets bragging rights! Rifle caliber casing...

Email responses only for this one. Just to give some guys a chance!

Update: Heh. One taker (who got it right in two tries). Okay, here's a hint that will ease the red herrings as you Google... rimmed casing, straight-sided, with a taper to it.

Obviously all the airplane guys check in around here, and the cartridge types have given up on me.

Update II: Okay. Here's another hint. Sheesh, only three takers... A reminder - this pic is larger than life - the thing is rifle caliber.

by John on Jun 09, 2005 | Ammunition

June 08, 2005

Fun, travel, and adventure!

Third bout of tornado sirens for the evening. One north, two south (*just* south) but we've got properly positioned trailer parks, so far, we're okay. The travel has been up and down stairs.

The sirens work, anyway.

It's been fun, herding cats, literally, down to the basement, so we can have the critters prepo'd for the run to the Arsenal Bunker.

I think I'll have a 'rita.

We haven't even had much rain, *here* yet. Towns north and south of us have been hit hard. Golfball sized hail. They're lifting our warnings now, but it's been an interesting evening.

Here, something to feed the circling sharks!

I'm not ignoring you - SWWBO let me sleep in late today and, well, I was at work, working the rest of the time.

Okay a/c grognards. What is it?

by John on Jun 08, 2005 | Aircraft
» No Pundit Intended links with: This Guy Is Sick

June 07, 2005

A good idea, combined with Gun Pr0n!

Over at Barking Moonbat Early Warning System the Skipper posts his idea on what to do about Darfur, while simultaneously helping in Iraq. We concur.

But what really caught our eye was the photograph of Darfurian Women and the Weapons They Like.

Go visit, and take a look. It's a collectors dream! I'm not posting the pic - play nice and go visit the skip - then come back and see if your list agrees with mine.

Lessee - in order front to rear..

German STG44
German/Italian Beretta MP38A SMG
Egyptian Hakim
Italian M91 Carcano Carbine
Two CZ52 Rifles (bayonets extended) Could be 52/57s...
M14/M1A (Most likely a 14)

I think I got 'em all...

I wouldn't want to be the G4 Ammo guy for this horde, however!

Hat tip to the Heartless Libertarian!

by John on Jun 07, 2005 | Gun Pics

A little bit of this, that, and a return to blogroots.

Since the sailors didn't seem interested... here's a link to an article about the Battle of Midway... Pictures from the Battle of Midway

Oops. Spanked.

John- Guess you still haven't found my Midway post from June 3 or CDR Salamander's from June 2 here. We Navy guys don't miss much, and Midway was one of the greatest sea victories of all time, although even the Air Corps got involved by attempting to bomb the Japanese fleet with B-17's...


Did someone say B-17s bombing?

And, Leagle, go *that* far back? Into the Archives? Geez, dude, blogs! We're blogs! If it ain't on the front page, it doesn't exist, except via Google! Or some such weak excuse, anyway.

Staff Officers, Commanders, Project Managers, CEOs, CIOs, IT Admin types, helk, just about anyone anywhere everywhere who haven't already seen this elsewhere and who has ever been in an organization of more than 20 people (and some with less) will appreciate this requirements brief. Some caveats - it's a powerpoint show, and if you believe that any Microsoft Product via the Internet is the Embodiment of Evil - don't download it. If you have sensitive ears, don't bother, as it's only funny with the sound on - but it is *chock full* of NOT WORK SAFE language. Earphones recommended, or low sound. Unless, like me, everyone in your local cube farm sends you stuff like this all the time anyway... including your corporate and government bosses....

With those warnings out of the way - Requirements Brief.

Just cuz' I'm feeling mean - I've got one and you don't! Now to sit back and see who in the readership trumps me and how long it takes... toys you use at work count, if you can use 'em for your own stuff...

Come to think of it - I bet you don't have this, either. A tabletop full of WWI grenades.

What the heck, let's roll with this. How about some old IEDs?

Left, Polish grenade from the Warsaw Uprising. Right, german concrete 'stock' mine. The cylinder in the middle is an original wax paper wrapper and label for the TNT charge that was inserted into the stock mine.

Here's another pic showing the bottom of the stock mine. The hole is where the TNT went, and usually (but not always) a wooden stake. Stock mines were commonly used as booby traps. They were made of concrete, many times with ball bearings embedded to improve fragmentation effects. They could accept a variety of fuzes, this one having a booby-trap pull fuze.

The Polish Home Army hand grenade was made with a pre-war Polish fuze, and whatever materials and explosive filler was at hand. This is a heavy sucker - definately for defensive use (i.e., thrown from cover).

All inert, of course! No placards at the Castle. We keep all that stuff over at the Firebase (but don't tell SGT B).

Snerk! I mean, like, y'know, everybody at DU *knows* that the BushChimp is an idiot, right? His grades at Yale prove it, right? Hee hee hee. Under the Yale system, Bush had a 77 (through his junior year, after which the scale changed). His oh-so-bright opponent? 76. Perhaps that's why Kerry didn't want his records released, as his transcript is a part of his records. I personally don't get that wrapped around grades. Of course not - mine, for my undergrad work, aren't a heckuvalot better. But I *test* well!

Another article on his records is here. For the moment, I guess we're going to have to trust the Globe that there are no new revelations (I was interested in the paperwork regarding his discharge) and take that at face value. If we've got any readers who were Naval officers of the period, I'd be interested in an opinion on the wording of the recommendations that the Globe quotes. In the Army, as I'm sure is true of all the Services, we have code phrases that allow us to 'damn with faint praise" but still sound nice. "One of the most outstanding junior officers I have served with" could mean, "he's fine, promote him with the others," while "One of the most outstanding officers I have served with," means "Promote Yesterday," with 'junior' being the code word to mean, "good kid, needs seasoning." I'd be interested in the take on that aspect of Kerry's reports.

Given what is thus far reportedly in the records, I'd say Kerry should have rolled with the punch about his grades and released 'em during the campaign. But mebbe I'm missing something, with my tin political ear. It wouldn't have helped him with me - he still fails the 'leaving combat early' test.

Michelle Malkin has more.

For a Lieutenant of the '80s, this is an interesting read. Any Russians at Graf during my time over there would have meant the 79th ITB had turned me and my guys into hamburger...

Changing subjects again, I've had chats with Wilcox (and, indeed, have published his brief on this site with his permission -right click, open in new window). Those of you who are 4th Gen Warfare fans will enjoy this article. The fight continues.

by John on Jun 07, 2005 | Grenades | Historical Stuff | I think it's funny!
» Cadillac Tight links with: Russians at Graf!

June 06, 2005

Hey! Pity party!

Key Monroe is in an attention-tart mood. (She's also a hoot!)

So, how about *all* of us (you too, lurkers, just make up some data to fill out the fields - but don't be mean!) go over and leave her comments. Lots and lots of comments. Like a Castle Comment party, only if all of you play, the Regulars won't have to put in quite as much effort, eh? So, how 'bout you Reservists putting in some time in this comment-swarm?

And what the heck, how about you bloggers link to her, too? Just to start a blog-swarm on her?

C'mon, what else ya got to do?

by John on Jun 06, 2005 | I think it's funny!
» Cadillac Tight links with: I'm up way too late
» Righty in a Lefty State links with: Key to the party
» The Gun Line links with: Pity Party!
» Key Issues links with: John Schools Key Australian Style

In other news...

The Red Ensign flies at West Coast Chaos! Militant Canadians and their Hanger's On! Excellent job, Temujin!

Mmmmm! Tanks! Aussie Tanks! H/t, Geoff!

BloodSpite visits the battlefield at Prairie Grove. We may have to consider a Castle Trip to Pea Ridge.

Ah, the Insurgents! No doubt they were simply protecting Iraq's cultural heritage from despoiling infidels! I'm sure someone on DU thought it was a *Good Thing* that the insurgents had the artifacts, and a *Bad Thing* that they were recovered. Someone go check, willya? I don't want to have to poke out my eyes.

Speaking of the insurgency-fodder - a NYT piece on Iraq that isn't all that negatively spun... or am I just benumbed?

The troops have always expressed themselves via their music.

The power of images... Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo...

Professor Bacevich will not be happy with this.

What SWWBO sez!. Gotta support the local guys!

For you vehicle collectors/restorers out there - CAPT H sends this worthy project along.

I went to EagleSpeak looking for a Midway link (he is, after all, a sailor) but all I found was this... Bring Back the Mighty Mo! That gets a big hoo-aah from me! I don't care if it's practical or not... just gimme the Big 'Uns!

Interesting development in the UK - I would expect to see similar pressures in big cities in the US if this works for the Brits.

Last, but not least - proud to be a "Son of a Gun" (see comments in post below) even impractical ones like this bronze monster, the Tsar's Gun at the Kremlin in Moscow.

Hi-res, click here.

Quite a day today!

June 6th...

1775 NY patriots prevent the Royal Governor from removing weapons from the city - I wonder how many would stand up to the Governor today?

1813 US invasion of Canada halted at Stoney Creek (Ont). Heh. Someday we'll get it right... ;^)

1898 Marines land at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba - Prisoners abused - Korans mistreated!

1918 Marines secure Belleau Wood.

Midway! The Tide Turns in the Naval War in the Pacific.

1942 Japanese troops land on Kiska in the Aleutians. Along with Attu, the only bits of continental US dirt successfully captured during WWII.
1943 Japanese decide to evacuate Kiska, except for a small force that was ovewhelmed easily.
1944 D-Day: 150,000 Allied Expeditionary Force lands in Normandy, France.
-The Airborne Drops.

Pegasus Bridge, securely in British hands, is crossed by military vehicles on D-Day plus 1, June 7, 1944. The Trustees of the Imperial War Museum, London

Gold Beach
Special Service troops of 47 Royal Marine Commando land at Gold Beach near Le Hamel on D-Day, June 6, 1944. The Trustees of the Imperial War Museum, London

Sword Beach
Mine- and obstacle-clearing tanks of the 27th Armoured Brigade thread toward the shore at Queen sector, Sword Beach, on D-Day, June 6, 1944. The Trustees of the Imperial War Museum, London

Juno Beach (en francais)

1st Hussars tanks and men of the 7th Infantry Brigade landing on a crowded beach at Courseulles-sur-Mer, June 6th,1944. Photo by Ken Bell. Department of National Defence / National Archives of Canada,

VAC site: Canada Remembers.
On board their assault landing crafts, men of the Royal Winnipeg Rifles heading towards their sector of Juno Beach, June 6th, 1944. Photo by Dennis Sullivan. Department of National Defence / National Archives of Canada,

Utah Beach
Soldiers of the 4th Infantry Division wade ashore at Victor sector, Utah Beach, on D-Day, June 6, 1944. Amphibious tanks are lined up at the water's edge. U.S. War Department/National Archives, Washington, D.C.

Omaha Beach
U.S. infantrymen wade from their landing craft toward Omaha Beach on D-Day, June 6, 1944. U.S. Coast Guard/National Archives, Washington, D.C.

-Brigadier General Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., earns the Medal of Honor on Utah Beach. And, like his father before him, dies before it can be awarded. Can anyone name the other Father/Son Medal of Honor holders?


1949 George Orwell's "1984" published

And, last, but not least, way too long ago for his taste... my brother-in-law Ed was born. Three kids! I reluctantly have to conclude he's been boffing my sister all these years, as there has been no mention of virgin births...

The picture of the Canadian Cemetery at Reviers was shamelessly stolen from these fine Canadians. I hope they can forgive me.

And this couple have some nice pics of the area as it looks today.

Oh - and no snarking regarding the French and D-Day. Not in the mood. So, quit it.

by John on Jun 06, 2005 | Historical Stuff
» Spotted Horse links with: Happy 13th Wedding anniversary to ???????
» Techography links with: Greatest Generation
» Righty in a Lefty State links with: History: Old and New
» Intermittent Stream links with: "Rangers! Lead the Way!"
» Iraq War Today links with: This Day in History - June 6, 1944 - D-Day
» Mark in Mexico links with: June 6, 1944

June 05, 2005

Bunker Mulligan, RIP.

All Stations This Net, All Stations This Net, Stand by for Traffic.

Battery Mulligan - Close Station, March Order.

Report LD and RP at new position...

Another veteran has started the trek down the road to Fiddler's Green.

I can't say I knew fellow mil-blogger, retired Zoomie and veteran and anxious father of a deployed warrior Mike Reed (better known as Bunker) well, but we were emailers and commenters. While Bunker now has the Ultimate Answer to the Ultimate Question, our thoughts rest with his family as they rearrange their lives around the huge hole that has suddenly appeared in it.

Get those hearts checked, guys and gals. Bunker was only 52.

Keep 'em cold for us, Bunker, down at Fiddler's Green.

Now is the time at Castle Argghhh! when we dance: In Memoriam.

The Castle is not the only place in the Milblog/Golf world to note Mike's passing:

Barb at Righty in a Lefty State.
Sara at Trying to Grok
Wallace at Streams.
Major Dad at Cursed with a Classical Education.
David Clary at DLC's 2005 Golf Diary.
Matt at Blackfive.
Bob at CrosSwords (top right sidebar)
Armageddon Project.
Little Bit Tired, Little Bit Worn.
Better Living Through Blogging.
Texas Trifles
Southern Conservative
The Fire Ant Gazette

The tagline to Mike's blog is:

“Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry.” ~Mark Twain

Based on the links above, I think you met the standard, Mike. I for one am sorry that I didn't say something like that before you went. But isn't it ever thus?

Now I think I'll call my father.

by John on Jun 05, 2005 | Something for the Soul
» The Armageddon Project links with: More Info About Bunker’s Passing

Selective Photojournalism

In a post last week, I said "Stand by for Ram" again over Abu Ghraib, because the ACLU and certain press organizations say that the American Public needs to know what is being "Done in Our Name."

Gaijin Biker agrees. Emphatically.

So do I. Lookit all these people we didn't abuse in Afghanistan, either. For longtime readers - this is MSG Keith's video. Right-click and save as - especially if you are on dial-up!