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January 28, 2006

H&I Fires 28 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

OMG - The Ultimate Army Men site! Gad, I have fond memories of these guys...

Ack! I meant to cover this - but Stop the ACLU did, so I'll send you there. The Challenger. I know exactly where I was - I went into the big fest tent at Graf (the Redeployment Assembly Area for REFORGER 86) and there, on a huge screen, was the enormous, and very wrong, smoke trail... -The Armorer

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Some very positive news from Iraq at Greyhawk's and Small Town Veteran's. - Fuzzybear Lioness

by Denizens on Jan 28, 2006 | General Commentary

Alright, Denizennes, Listen Up!

Yer outta control!

First - the Castle Staff use the Jungle Room as a Daycare center during the workdays. The kiddles just love the theme. But, ladies, after a long night of debauched behavior in there, clean up after yerselves, for pity's sake!


Next - A Caption Contest!

A loyal reader in College Station, Texas, sent me this picture after reading Bill's post on the subject.

It's soooooooo horrible, so vile, so demeaning to womyn (and Ry, VERYNOTWORKSAFE!) that I had to put it *Behind The Curtain* in the Flash Traffic/Extended Entry.

Hey, it's Saturday, our slowest day, we won't lose too many readers, since I don't thing[k] that many womyn spend time here anyway. So - apparently, some Denizennes went to College Station, and this is what happened.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

January 27, 2006

H&I Fires 27 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

Over at Winds of Change, a little analysis of analysis at the Atlantic.

Another look at the Naval Academy sexual harassment controversy H/t, Ry

Today in history:
1944 900 day German Siege of Leningrad lifted: 600,000 dead
1945 Russia liberates Auschwitz Concentration Camp
1967 Apollo 1 fire kills astronauts Grissom, White & Chaffee
1977 Pres Carter pardons most Vietnam War draft evaders (10,000) -The Armorer


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This is too good to pass up. -Cassandra via Fuzzybear Lioness

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Chuck Simmins has Someone You Should Know, Marine Captain Patrick M. Rapicault. -The Armorer

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by Denizens on Jan 27, 2006 | General Commentary
» Don Surber links with: Of Course Byrd Supports Alito
» CDR Salamander links with: USNA and a commute distance to DC

Just Curious

...but has anyone weighed in with their Congressman on who to vote for for the House leadeship post? I did.

by Denizens on Jan 27, 2006 | Politics

War clouds gather to the North.

My plans for Canada proceed apace (see discussion here). Canada is setting the pretext for war with the US over our submarines transiting the North Pole, which will give us the excuse to strike North and seize all the good spots, and prevent them from, wait - they can *have* Detroit. CAPT H had a pretty good plan for that.

Of course - the analysts have it wrong...

Testing the notion that he would kowtow to the Bush administration, Harper, whose Conservative Party won general elections on Monday, said Thursday he would stand by a campaign pledge to increase Canada’s military presence in the Arctic and put three military icebreakers in the frigid waters of the Northwest Passage.

This is obviously double-plus good! Mr. Harper is setting the stage for a "Mouse that Roared" scenario - all part of Dubya's Plan for World Hegemony®!

Hee! Let's see if any of our Canuckistanian readers rise to the bait.

Combat Art and Artists

Commander Salamander indulges in his taste for military art. Heh. Whattaya expect from a member of a service whose antecedents include the homily "Rum, buggery, and the lash"?

Now - ya want some *real* combat art, try this:

Last February you guys were nice enough to post a piece about my little run in with protesters at the opening of my combat art show at the Farnsworth Museum in Rockland, Maine. I thought I’d let you and your readership know that I’m back in Iraq producing art and taking pictures. You can check out my current trip at [Fire and Ice] and see my work and read commentaries about my field experience. Thanks, Mike

Happy to oblige, Mike. All y'all add Fire and Ice to your blogrolls and RSS feeders.

And check out this post and this post for a little sample of what kind of work the Chief can do.

If this sample isn't enough.


2nd Platoon F/2/1 Bounding forward through breached walls, Hisaybah, Iraq, 9 Nov 05.</p>

<p>Art of WO1 Michael D Fay (CE MHG Combat Artist). Courtesy of the Marine Corps Combat Art Collection

Send Lawyers, Guns, and Money

Nod to Warren Zevon...

From an email, an observation of how war will finally wither away... much like fun playground equipment has, and for the same reason:

Sir,

If we do this the way the New York Times wants it done...


Urban combat in 2020

The squad Captain-Solicitor will laser designate each building the squad will likely enter or from which they are taking fire. The GPS co-ordinates will be transferred by satellite to Washington where the Pentagon's legal software will file warrants to enter the houses with the World Court in the Hague. Warrants will be requested hundreds of times per minute.

Meanwhile, the terrorists' legal software operating from the Iranian consul in Amsterdam will file restraining orders against the U.S.Army at the same rate.

Amnesty International will file Freedom of Information requests to publicly post the Army's intended targets in real-time. Every building the Army targets but does not enter will be treated as frivolous lawsuit by the International Bar Association.

Wrongful Death and other civil suits will assail the legal computers, but the Pentagon will auto-counter-sue at 800 to 1200 suits per minute with processing power to spare for restraining orders against the NBC/CNN robo-cameras hovering around the heads of our troops.

and so forth...

rodent



This photo accompanied the story.

Military Police prepare to refuel before entering the city of Whew!, Mudholistan on December 5, 2020, while their International Court-appointed solicitor ensures that their field-refueling permits are still valid, and that all proper per-event environmental impact forms have been filed, examined, rejected, resubmitted, approved, and thus the refueling operation is permissable, after which the forms will be buried in a peat bog and recycled as fire lighters.  (Released)</p>

<p>(U.S. Army Photo by Spc Daniel Blowhard December 5, 2020.)</p>

<p>Released by Maj. Hawthorne-Smythwaite, Esq.

Military Police prepare to refuel before entering the city of Whew!, Mudholistan on December 5, 2020, while their International Court-appointed solicitor ensures that their field-refueling permits are still valid, and that all proper per-event environmental impact forms have been filed, examined, rejected, resubmitted, approved, and thus the refueling operation is permissable, after which the forms will be buried in a peat bog and recycled as fire lighters. (Released)

(U.S. Army Photo by Spc Daniel Blowhard December 5, 2020.)

Released by Maj. Hawthorne-Smythwaite, Esq.">

I'm Baaack...

Sorry to have been off the net for so long, but I've been focused on switching seats in the airplane I fly. I now have a window and can see out the front. This is good.

I've been watching the fur fly in some many areas (Iran's effort to build its own Nuclear Party Favors to pop over the heads of those pesky Jews (among others), Ted Kennedy sonorous dronings-on about the inherent evil of the President's latest SCOTUS nominee, Joel Stein bearing his MoveOn.org soul, etc., etc.) that it's hard to know where to begin. Moreover, it's somewhat intimidating to come up with something unique, much less, er, profound, on these goings-on. So, lowering my sights to just musing about stuff in general, here's my take...

Nuclear Ayatollahs:

I'm not privy to the Administration's plan to carry out their somewhat veiled threat to prevent Iran from joining the nuclear club, but so far I'm not confident we have the political will or international support to destroy that regime's ability to build a viable nuclear weapons stockpile directly. It would, however, be interesting to overtly (and often) declare our national support to the Iranian Resistance...and back it up with aggressive and sustained support.

Granted, this would be a radical departure from past US behavior, i.e., supporting those who would fight for their freedom, rather than leaving them to the tender mercies of their tyrants, ala, Poppa Bush and the Scowcroft crowd.

But if we could just have the balls to say, "OK, people, you have a choice. Throw the bums out or they are going to put you in a position of watching your minarets melt. This ain't personal, but we think you can understand how we will respond if Ahmadinejad has his way. This is not something we will have to ponder. In fact, our leaders probably won't be given that luxury. Indeed, if a dirty bomb is detonated in a Western country or, worse yet, an actual nuclear detonation occurs, our own citizenry's demands for retribution, swift, terrible retribution, cannot and will not be ignored.

Nuclear products are traceable. The mullahs' fingerprints will be all over the event, making any excuse not to respond to Teheran utterly moot. That said, wasting your collective arses for something we daresay the majority of you probably detest and understandably fear, would be terribly unfair and unjust.

So, stand by for money, guns, cheerleading and muscle. The latter we will happily provide if you need sanctuary. The Iraqis like the idea of a non-threatening border and don't mind us hammering the Iranian Revolutionary Guards' nuts to cream if they so much as look at us funny within an inch of the border. Meanwhile, we think the Europeans are coming around. Really. Stop laughing. Anyway, we're gonna put the squeeze on these guys from a number of fronts--political, economic, informational, and in other ways. But the hard work will be up to you.

Besides, if you fix it, you own the victory. You, no one else, will determine your future. It will cost you dearly in blood but the reward is, well, a future."

Ted on "Alioto" (his pronunciation):

"Ladies and gentlemen, we apologize for this interruption. Senator Specter has called for a 15-minute recess so they we may execute this warrant. Senator Kennedy, you are under arrest for the murder of one Mary Jo Kopechne. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to have an attorney present now and during any future questioning. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you free of charge if you wish. Gentlemen, again, we apologize for the disturbance. Senator Leahy, you may contact Senator Kennedy through the District federal prosecutor's office. Mr. Kennedy will probably be released on bond--we doubt his own recognizance is prudent--within the hour."

Joel Stein: A Rove plant if there ever was one. Heh.

25 Lessons Learned from OIF and OEF

Continuing the Lessons Learned from OIF/OEF that I started in this post . Note to military Googlers - these are *not* tactical AARs!

This one *is* worksafe.

Lesson #11. They Really Do "Get It".

Too bad he's not talking about the media or the glitterati...

And, in case you think it's just awful to show the jihadis in this light. Remember this.

This is *not* an official document! I contacted Mr. Coffey and have his permission for this use. If you choose to download and share it around via email, you may do so - but send it with the caveat that any publishing of the document, for profit or no, needs the permission of Mr. Coffey, as I only asked permission for myself, and he retains all rights!

Mr. Coffey can be reached via his website: Purple Mountain Publishing.

For Previous Lessons Learned, click the numbers. 1. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.

Best Little Beerhouse in Texas

A Texas Tech graduate, a University of Texas grad and a Texas Aggie were sitting in a bar in San Antonio. The view of the river was fantastic, the beer was ice cold and the food exceptional.

"But," said the guy from Tech, "I still prefer the beer joints back in Lubbock. There's one place where the owner goes out of his way for the locals. When you buy four beers, he'll buy the fifth."

The Longhorn said, "Well, at my favorite bar in Austin, the owner will buy your third drink after you've bought two."

"We-e-e-ell, that's nothin'," the Aggie responded. "Back in College Station, there's this bar where, from the very moment you set foot in the place, they'll buy you a drink and keep them coming all night. Then, when you've decided that you've had enough to drink, they take you upstairs and treat you to some o' what the Good Book calls 'pleasures of the flesh.' And it's all on the house."

The Longhorn and the Red Raider looked at each other, then at the Aggie.

"And this actually happened to you?" asked the Longhorn.

"We-e-e-ell, no, not me-myself personally," admitted the Aggie. "But my sister, now..."

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H/t to V29, who keeps promising himself to visit College Station...

January 26, 2006

H&I Fires 26 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

Ahhhhh. This is nice to note. Saves us ammo and POW space.

No "Botax" in California?

A marmoreally immobile forehead or an exorcised set of crow's feet would still have been available — but with state sales tax added to the price.

And the pansies don't wanna do it. Mind you, there's a tax on phones, left over from the Spanish-American War... Heh. New Jersey is more Progressive than California. *There's* a mind-bender for ya.

Oh my - in 10, 15 years, the silk scarves are going to be around the necks of fat, pimply teenagers with bad hair and a PS(x) embedded in their brains. In fact, the pilot arm of the Air Force will telecommute from home. Ender's Game crawls inexorably closer. Mebbe this will draw Dusty out of hiatus... -The Armorer

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Sanger has a must read. - Fuzzybear Lioness

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Kevin at The Liberal Wrong-Wing would like to create a carnival of Liberal's wrongs...

"1) All posts must be about why liberals are always so wrong! Anything goes here... point out the flaws of liberal arguments, flaws in liberal integrity or just bash a high-profile liberal in a well-written, logical post. Basically, any post which opposes liberalism will be fine. "

Have a good example of wrong-thinking libs? Read the rules, and submit your post in the carnival at The Liberal Wrong-Wing
-Barb

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Rammer has some thoughts about keeping things quiet at the library (or why militant radical librarians might just have aided and abetted a terrorist making threats.) He also found this article about Bunnies on Wall Street? --Punctilious

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Building upon Punct's animal theme, I thought I'd share Kevin's new song with ya'll. And Mary Jo has a few things to say to the New Generation about dear Senator Kennedy. ~~AFSister

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All y'all have voted from all y'alls machines, right? I know, all this begging is unseemly. -The Armorer

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by Denizens on Jan 26, 2006 | General Commentary
» Blog o'RAM links with: Radical Militant Librarians1
» Blog o'RAM links with: Radical Militant Librarians1
» My Side of the Puddle links with: Dear Senator Kennedy

I got a compliment most of ya can't touch.

Quoth a good friend of mine yesterday at work:

"You must have the lowest-maintenance wife in the state."

Word. Er, phrase?

I dare say at *least* the region.

Sadly. for her, the reverse is probably not true.

I am, of course, not worthy.

That is all.

Interesting Times

Hamas wins.

You can make the argument that Hamas' win doesnt' speak well of the Palestinian electorate - but you can also note their choices weren't all that thrilling either.

You can take an optimistic look at the fact that Arafat's Devil-Spawn, the al-Fatah party, apparently is going to peacefully allow the transfer of power. That's a rarity in the region (less Israel).

Democratic sausage-making in action - which could be the basis for some progress. Or not. No telling, yet.

Hamas winning outright also makes them have to *own* the policy of the Government they form - if they had won big, but not big enough, they could probably have compelled the policy anyway, but not been on the hook for the outcomes.

This puts them squarely in the drivers seat. Now to see if they are a rebirth of the Nazi Party, or something rather more useful.

And we won't know the answer to *that* question until they either start WWIII or govern successfully and peacefully transfer power themselves to another party.

Interesting times, indeed. Of course, Bush has nothing to do with it. This is all Clinton-Carter legacy stuff.

For pessimistic looks at it - see Stop the ACLU and SWWBO.

Hmmmm. Interesting.

Hosting provided by FotoTime

First up: Happy Australia Day! A shout out to my Digger buddies!

Little shiny bits that caught my eye this morning...

Tidbits of history.

Born:
1819 Abner Doubleday, Maj Gen, U.S, , d. this day, 1893
1880 General of the Army Douglas MacArthur

Died:
1885 Charles George Gordon slain at 51 by the Mahdists, Khartoum, setting the stage for Charlton Heston's greatest role...
1893 Abner Doubleday, did not invent baseball (see above), on his 74th birthday
1993 Jan Gies, Dutch resistance fighter, who aided the Frank family - with the push of his wife.


Event

1787 Daniel Shays & followers attack arsenal at Springfield, Mass.
1788 Capt Arthur Phillip founds a penal colony at Sydney, Australia colony, setting the stage for Vegemite!
1799 French set-up puppet "Pathenopean Republic" in Naples, loot and
rape at will. Gotta love that Revolutionary Fervor!
1863 Black 54th Massachusetts Infantry is formed
1885 Mahdist rebels capture Khartoum, slay "Chinese" Gordon - setting the stage for the most embarassing role for Sir Alec Guiness.
1890 NY reporter Nellie Bly completes a 'round the world trip in 72 days. Now you can do it in less than 72 hours, if you don't mind risking Deep Vein Thrombosis.
1934 Nazi Germany and Poland sign ten year non-aggression pact. The lamb lies down with the lion.
1944 Argentina severs diplomatic relations with Germany and Japan. Peron reads the handwriting on the wall - better than he did later in his political career.
1944 Liberia declares war on Germany and Japan. Germany and Japan don't notice.
1945 Japanese government orders an end to offensive operations in China. Those damn 'Muricans are being really pesky.
1948 Executive Order 9981: segregation in the Armed Forces must end.
1957 India annexes Kashmir - still digesting it with periodic gassy cramps.

Heh. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery... but target ID on a Modular Force battlefield (those Strykers) just got more interesting.

Us:
Stryker with slat armor

Many potential Thems:

BTR-80 with slat armor


Black Jack, can ya hear me?

Given that certainly *some* of these are actually smugglers posing as Mexican authorities - one can imagine the International Outcry™ among the Usual Suspects™ if these incursions were going the other direction? If the Mexicans *want* us to put the military on the border, this is certainly a way to go about it. Actually I'm sure it's all part of a shadowy international anti-war activist/rogue government cartel to compel the US to return its forces to the US to secure our Southern Border. Hmmmmm. Now - do we have to look at that Canadian revitalization of their military thingy in a new, more sinister, light? Will they stab us in the back as our attention is turned south, and seize Detroit and Seattle? Not to mention, Minot. Of course, we've got experience taking down badly-run corrupt Third World nations, perhaps a little Thunder Run to the nearest Mexican Army base would impress upon the soldados that they should stay on their side of the line. Punitive Expedition, anyone?

Heh. Dave points out he got here WAAAAAAY ahead o' me!

25 Lessons Learned From OIF and OEF

Continuing the Lessons Learned from OIF/OEF that I started in this post . Note to military Googlers - these are *not* tactical AARs!

This one *is* worksafe.

Lesson #10. America Cares.

And, in case you think it's just awful to show the jihadis in this light. Remember this.

This is *not* an official document! I contacted Mr. Coffey and have his permission for this use. If you choose to download and share it around via email, you may do so - but send it with the caveat that any publishing of the document, for profit or no, needs the permission of Mr. Coffey, as I only asked permission for myself, and he retains all rights!

Mr. Coffey can be reached via his website: Purple Mountain Publishing.

For Previous Lessons Learned, click the numbers. 1. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.

January 25, 2006

H&I Fires 25 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

A relatively even-handed piece on the results of military prisoner-abuse trials. I do think there hasn't been sufficient pain in the senior officer ranks, but it's hard to tell from the outside, even knowing how it works on the inside.

There's still time to- vote for us! Though we're catching up it's going to be hard to beat Oleg, since he has actual nude girls in his gun pr0n!

Speaking of Cassandra (I was, in the post below) she's in fine fettle today, poking journos, yet also being rendered speechless. Which, as we al lknow, is HARD.

As 25 January is Burns Night - this story seems appropriate... And whatever the giftie gie us, we hope it's nae a Haggis! -The Armorer

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The American Thinker shares the letter of an Army officer in response to the Stein op-ed piece.
-Adjutant

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by Denizens on Jan 25, 2006 | General Commentary
» Fuzzilicious Thinking links with: Stein, Again: An Officer and a Gentleman Responds

Military News of Note.

Here's a story that will no doubt put some academic knickers in a twist - colleges and universities are actually coming to visit Fort Leavenworth to see how we're building the new classroom building for the Command and General Staff College - the Lewis and Clark Center. A moving target, pushing the state of the art as we go. I would note that the construction features mentioned have Oklahoma City, and not the New Madrid fault, in mind.

The article here makes this sound almost like a new invention... I'm guessing the Vultures among us could rule on that - New, or a reinvention of something we'd had before? The Downed Aircraft Recovery Team, or DART.

I still have trouble understanding how the anti-war (more accurately, anti-Bush, true anti-war types would *not* be supportive) can utter supportive things about the jihadis who are boobytrapping schools. Oh, I forgot - heretics and girls interested in being educated are valid targets, too. Progressive bunch, this fellas.

Heh. While I understand the purely practical aspects of this - and the Usual Suspects won't care if we do it at Leavenworth or an unclaimed rock somewhere, I'd have thought we'd release this info on a Friday, if only to to bury it in the weekend news cycle. Of course, we haven't executed anyone since 1961, so there's obviously no rush, either.

I'm not sure I'm with Austin Bay on the actual status of the Canadian military - but I agree with the general thrust of his op-ed on the subject.

I was pretty much going to ignore this piece of fluff from Joel Stein, simply because it really wasn't a new view from the Usual Suspects. But Hugh Hewitt interviewed Mr. Stein yesterday, regarding his column - and the transcript of the interview is fun. If I'm being too light and airy on this poseur and you'd like a little red meat - go visit Ms. Cassandra.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

Worthy of a Repeat.*

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Remember - someone is reading. And not just jihadis, but the 1st IO Command & your commander. If watching out for jihadis seems just too esoteric, remember your boss.

Cyber Patrol: Careless keyboards can kill By Ed Beemer January 24, 2006


ARLINGTON, Va. (Army News Service, Jan. 24, 2006) -- Fewer people would know about a deployment or operation if you screamed it out at the Superbowl than if you posted it on a Web log or blog.

Common sense will tell you not to discuss sensitive subjects on the streets of Baghdad. The same common sense should apply on the highways of cyberspace. Soldiers need to keep this in mind, not only because it is the right thing to do, but because it could land them in a world of trouble.

The technology of communication is a double-edged sword and often the sharper edge is being used against you. There have been too many instances of sensitive information being made public. For example one officer posted a picture of his tactical operations center or TOC, complete with secret documents showing troop rotations.

Another Soldier in theater posted when his unit’s laundry runs were. That information has IED opportunity written all over it.

The list of what should not be posted on an unsecured site or sent via unsecured communication channels is almost endless. It includes the obvious like troop movements, operational details, TDYs, planning issues and any classified material. But it also includes any personal information – information that could be used to put you, your fellow soldiers or even your own family at risk.

This is also a matter of situational awareness; knowing what seemingly innocent information could be useful to the enemy. Each unit’s operational security professional needs to advise supervisors on means to prevent the release of sensitive information.

But every Soldier, regardless of rank and position, has a personal responsibility to safeguard what makes it onto the Internet. In order to ensure that sensitive and unauthorized information is not posted, check with your immediate supervisor for approval before your next blog entry or site update. More information on OPSEC can be found at [this location if you have AKO access].

This is a very serious matter and the fallout from even one instance of releasing unauthorized information can be severe. Senior Army commanders have clearly stated that the Army must "hold people accountable that place others at risk."

The rest is in the Flash Traffic/Extended Entry

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

The Soldier's Load.

Air Force Enlisted Tactical Air Controller (ETAC) resting whle moving with his supported unit in Iraq.

Given the way the comments moved [well, the *serious* comments] in my Any Soldier, Any Era post, this is probably a good time to drag something up out of the archives.

The Soldiers Load, Part 1..

The Soldier's Load, Part II.

And it ain't just our Army, either. Any soldier. Any era. Just ask these Canadians.

English/AnglaisAPD02 5000-210March 15, 2002 Shah-i-Kot Valley, AfghanistanIn the mountains of Paktia Province east of Gardez, members of an anti-tank team from the 3rd Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry (3 PPCLI) Battle Group take a much-needed rest on the trail. The oxygen-poor atmosphere of 3,000 metres is very hard on these soldiers, who carry particularly heavy loads of weapons and ammunition. They are engaged in Operation HARPOON, the Canadian Army's first non-defensive combat mission since the Korean War, which is itself a component of Operation ANACONDA, a major US-led assault on Taliban and al-Qaeda positions. The 3 PPCLI Battle Group is deployed in Afghanistan on Operation APOLLO, Canada's military contribution to the international campaign against terrorism.Photo by Cpl Lou Penney, 3 PPCLI

Update: Speaking of those Canadians in that pic above - CAPT H provides this link to one Canadian Soldier's response to the issues laid out above.

Discuss amongst yourselves... Heh. Again, acting in my role as CAPT H's clerk... he offers up this.

25 Lessons Learned From OIF and OEF

Continuing the Lessons Learned from OIF/OEF that I started in this post . Note to military Googlers - these are *not* tactical AARs!

This one *is* worksafe.

Lesson #9. War Sucks.

And, in case you think it's just awful to show the jihadis in this light. Remember this.

This is *not* an official document! I contacted Mr. Coffey and have his permission for this use. If you choose to download and share it around via email, you may do so - but send it with the caveat that any publishing of the document, for profit or no, needs the permission of Mr. Coffey, as I only asked permission for myself, and he retains all rights!

Mr. Coffey can be reached via his website: Purple Mountain Publishing.

For Previous Lessons Learned, click the numbers. 1. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.

January 24, 2006

H&I Fires for 24 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

Ry thinks you'll find this stuff interesting. I did.

Arms Control Wonk on some options for dealing with Iran.

Winds of Change on retail, vice wholesale, organizational change. We aren't talking economics here. Well, yes we are, actually, but not Wal-Mart versus Costco.

I found this interesting, impacting as it does on what I do day to day.

Another "Priceless" video. If yer in an anti-war/anti-military environment - watch your six.

Oh - and don't forget - vote early, vote often! Though it's going to be hard to beat Oleg, he has actual nude girls in his gun pr0n! -The Armorer

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Lex and a few of his fellow sailors wax poetic about life in the navy (read the comments). He also tells us what happens when a "snot-nosed young Navy Lt." fails to show his Marine TOPGUN instructor proper respect.

And speaking of Lex, Guinness Ice Cream.

Soldiers’ Angels needs adopters.

NY Times suggests preemptive military action against Iran. (H/T Captain’s Quarters).

CDR Salamander alerts us to Naomi Wolfe’s spiritual awakening, and points us to a discussion of U.S. war costs as a percentage of the GDP at National Review.

-Fuzzybear Lioness

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Drinking helps ward off stroke... but we don't recommend it. Good golly, what's a fella to do? Guess I'll have the merlot.

This guy lives an Armorer-style dream! Well, except for the being in France part. H/t - The Snarkatron!

I knew about Colonel John Stapp - Joe Kittinger was unknown to me. Balls of Steel, indeed!-The Armorer

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Army Interrogator Welshofer Convicted of Negligent Homicide...

...gets a reprimand, 60 days restriction, and a $6K fine? I would note that he's also (at this point, depending on Major General Mixon's review) a convicted felon. MG Mixon can reduce the penalty or set-aside the conviction, but not make it worse.

But that's a pretty light sentence for the charged crime.

Having sat on a Courts Martial panel that did something similar (convicted reluctantly, assessed a $1 fine) my gut feel (and that's all it is, I have *no* inside info at all) is the panel strongly feels this never should have made it to a Court, but should have been handled administratively.

In other words, the extenuating and mitigating circumstances presented by the defense were overwhelming (as they were in the case I sat on) but - the panel, in the end, felt compelled to convict, because at some point, Welshofer could have stopped it himself. But the panel didn't want Welshofer to be the complete scapegoat here when there are others up the chain who should also suffer professionally, if not criminally. That's how I read the otherwise rather surprising verdict.

Canadian Politics, US Blogosphere Credit for...

...not.

In my reading and email, the Canadian Blogosphere doesn't quite see Captain Ed as the Savior of All That Is Right And Good, as exemplified in this post by Austin Bay (I *do* share Bay's opinion of the 4th CMBG, however). Damian at Babbling Brooks covers that pretty well, I think.

Not that they don't appreciate Captain's Quarters efforts regarding Gomery. But they would suggest (with some, shall we say, *insider* perspective) that while Gomery was certainly a part of the environment that caused the election - the election was, in fact, more a result of bad political tactics in a parliamentary system rather than the prime result of the Gomery investigation. This in no way denigrates Captain Ed's showing we Americans (and Canadians) some of the quirks of the Canadian political and judicial systems.... Yet what seemed obvious to luminaries such as Reynolds in November must be viewed in the light of subsequent events.

Regardless, we American bloggers should, perhaps, not take *quite* so much credit for what is a vastly more complex drama than simply the corruption scandal (which goes to the heart of what I talked about regarding our problems here down south - too long in power, you're bound to have this problem, regardless of left or right. It's a genetic disease of political power).

But even I, sworn to the Annexation of Western Canada (snerk!) was a bit uncomfortable with all the praise heaped on Captain Ed, Caped Crusader for Canadian Justice. (That's not Captain Ed's schtick, that's me talkin').

It's a bit like me taking credit for bringing down the candidacy of the Prince of Darkness, General Clark... when, in fact, the Prince was his own worse enemy. I was just a tiny sliver of a mirror. Captain Ed is a much larger piece than I, to be sure - but he's not the single-handed Architect of Doom, as Damian Brooks (not to be confused with Damian Penny) points out in his piece linked above.

Just sayin', y'know? All y'all are going to ruin my plans for Annexation if you keep riling 'em up like this.

Stop it.

Perhaps some of the Castle's Canadian Readers (and they are legion!) will weigh in here. Denizen Alan is already rejoicing in Divided Government... a personal fave of mine.

That said...

The Conservatives win - with a minority. But they win, which is a change. They now have a chance to show they can do something. Such as come up with innovative ideas to help the Maritimes that don't just involve wealth transfers from healthier provinces to the weaker ones - unless it is (apt for the Maritimes) to help them to fish, rather than just giving them fish. Too often the Left is about taking my fish and giving it to the other guy, vice giving the other guy the tools and skills to fish - or some other useful skill so I'll happily *give* him a fish in exchange for something I need. Keep that in mind up there you guys. You can grow your party if you've got the skillz. But good luck with that whole Quebec thing.

Update: Quotulatiousness has a nice Canadian Blog Roundup.

by John on Jan 24, 2006 | Politics
» Ghost of a flea links with: A note to some of our friends in the American blogosphere
» Quotulatiousness links with: Who's saying what?

Any soldier, any era...

...would recognize these guys.

On 11 January 2006 soldiers from Bravo Company, 2nd Bn, 502nd INF continued Operation Falcon Sweep in the Village of Shakaria, Iraq.  One of the objectives of the operation was to identify and capture terrorist in the village and surrounding area. Soldiers searched the fields looking for a terrorist.  (Released) US Army photo by SSG Kevin L. Moses Sr.

Hi-res here.

These guys would...

Marines in the Pacific, WWII

...so would these.

British soldiers in Flanders, WWI

As would these, and many others, throughout history. This is Infantry. This is what makes the difference.

by John on Jan 24, 2006 | Observations on things Military
» CDR Salamander links with: Vince Lombardi warfare

25 Lessons Learned From OIF and OEF

Continuing the Lessons Learned from OIF/OEF that I started in this post . Note to military Googlers - these are *not* tactical AARs!

This one *is* worksafe.

Lesson #8. The Newest Greatest Generation Has Emerged.

I would add - "Glitterati and other elites not well represented."

And the sad circumstances of Pat Tillman's death and the Army's poor handling of the subject in no way diminishes Tillman - despite how the cynics and anti-Bush moonbats tried to spin it.

And, in case you think it's just awful to show the jihadis in this light. Remember this.

This is *not* an official document! I contacted Mr. Coffey and have his permission for this use. If you choose to download and share it around via email, you may do so - but send it with the caveat that any publishing of the document, for profit or no, needs the permission of Mr. Coffey, as I only asked permission for myself, and he retains all rights!

Mr. Coffey can be reached via his website: Purple Mountain Publishing.

For Previous Lessons Learned, click the numbers. 1. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.

January 23, 2006

H&I Fires for 23 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

Why why why am I always TDY for this? This time I'll be in Korea! Waaaaah!

Someone remind me again - how many trials for torture took place under Saddam? For that matter - I don't have the time to look - how many Serbs have been tried by the UN for war crimes? The second question is serious. Anybody compared the records of who's trying whom for crimes committed in wartime lately? The US Army just completed another trial - with a conviction of the interrogator, Chief Warrant Officer Lewis Welshofer Jr, who killed Iraqi General Mowhoush. -The Armorer

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I've been having waaaaaaaaay too much fun with The Mechanical Contrivium... WAY too much fun!
~~AFSister
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RINO Sightings is up!

This has the potential to get ugly - and I *don't* think government subscribers should get a pass.

I call a foul! I clearly laid out in this post some new rules for this year. I ran into my first egregious violation of this one just at lunch:

New Rule: The more complicated the Starbucks order, the bigger the a$$ hole. If you walk into a Starbucks and order a "decaf grande half-soy, half-low fat, iced vanilla, double-shot, gingerbread cappuccino, extra dry, light ice, with one Sweet-n'-Low and one NutraSweet," ooh, you're a huge a$$ hole.

I'm at Barista's, a *drive-thru* coffee place. The twitterpate in front of me took 3 (count 'em, I did), *3* minutes to *make* her order. It's a frickin' drive-thru at lunchtime, you DOLT! And it was for *one* drink, not an office full. Not seem like a long time? Sit still and watch a clock for 3 minutes. Then add 4 to make the thing. 7 minutes out of a 60 minute hour to serve one drink to one customer. Okay, I return this thread to it's original, upright position. -The Armorer

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by Denizens on Jan 23, 2006 | General Commentary
» Unpartisan.com Political News and Blog Aggregator links with: Officer to serve no jail time for Iraqi general's death

Canadian Elections.

How many of you knew Canada was having elections? Well, you should - they matter to us, in ways large and small. And this election is shaping up to have the potential to be as historic for Canada as our 1980 elections were for us.

WINNIPEG, Manitoba (Reuters) - Canadian political leaders on Sunday made one last cross-country dash on the eve of an election expected to oust the ruling Liberals, move Canada to the right and improve ties with the United States.

With polls showing a steady lead of 7 to 12 percentage points, the Conservatives sounded increasingly confident, though it looked like they would fall short of a majority in Parliament and have to depend on other parties.

That's not necessarily a bad thing. A little divided government makes you forge consensus, rather than run roughshod. I frankly like it that way in the US. You are then less likely to see comments like this:

"After 13 years and four failed mandates, the era of Liberal arrogance is ending," local candidate Michael Smith told a Winnipeg rally as he introduced Conservative leader Stephen Harper, who made stops in Ontario, Manitoba and British Columbia on Sunday.

If the Conservatives were to win strong, almost unfettered power, all we'd be doing is reading (and making) that same comment with Conservative substituted for Liberal, and appropriate Party Apparatchik names. Much as we're seeing with the Republicans now - they having held power long enough to have been tainted by the influence peddling that goes with it. The Dems are exactly the same in this regard, they just aren't in power. It's a disease of politicians and power, not party. I'd like to think the Right is better at treating it - but, we'll see how the Doctors of the Republican Party heal themselves. Heh.

But how do we know all of this is a Good Thing? It has Michael Moore's panties in a twist, that's how:

Controversial American documentary filmmaker Michael Moore bemoaned an apparent right turn by liberal northern neighbor Canada in its upcoming general election.

"Oh, Canada -- you're not really going to elect a Conservative majority on Monday, are you? That's a joke, right? I know you have a great sense of humor, ... but this is no longer funny," Moore complained in a commentary on his website.

"First, you have the courage to stand against the war in Iraq -- and then you elect a prime minister who's for it. You declare gay people have equal rights -- and then you elect a man who says they don't," Moore moaned.

Ahhhh. I *do* like an anguished Moore.

Show us what you've got, Canada! You can throw the bums out - you aren't going to wholly throw over the traces, so the Conservatives won't get nearly as much done as many of you fear. And when you return the Liberals to power - remember - for the electorate, Divide and Conquer is a good tactic.

Update: This Canadian take on the politics is too good to leave buried in the Comments!


Time for a gun post...

...and not just because we've been nominated at Countertop Chronicles for "Best Gun Pron" in the Gunnies, either!

A topic covered in the gunblogs, I know by Murdoc and others, as well as me... Metalstorm gets closer to entering service. This is an ugly little spud.

WASHINGTON, Jan. 20 (UPI) -- Next month a new high-explosive munition will be fired in Singapore and then tested again by the U.S. Army, heralding what may be a sea change in weaponry: a gun that can fire 240,000 rounds per minute.

That's compared to 60 rounds per minute in a standard military machine gun.

Metal Storm Inc., a munitions company headquartered in Virginia but with its roots in Australia, has been developing a gun that can shoot at blistering speeds, albeit in short bursts as each barrel is reloaded.

Company website with video click here.

Speaking of Murdoc, I'll let him have at this story.

Speaking of machine guns... take a look at the durability (not to mention reliability) of the latest rendition of that venerable old pig, the M60. Do me a favor - right click and save as - don't stream it. Right-click and save-as here.

I'll close this post with a picture of a new Castle Armory acquisition - a M1886 German Shrapnel round - that has a very interesting (to the Armorer) time fuze. Subject of a future post.

Hosting provided by FotoTime

Silly Government Tricks

Hosting provided by FotoTime

If you live in Kansas, did you know that your state apparatchiks have decided that, despite the fact that others states allow it, and that they actually meet safety and roadability regs in place when built - you can't register something like a White Scout Car or Ferret in the state? I suppose on the plus side, it also mean they can't property tax you, either.

These things are registerable in other states. I have seen several (and ridden in one and followed it through downtown Atlanta traffic - see pic linked above) that are registered (and legal) in Georgia. This all arose from the efforts of a local KC man to register his Ferret (we're not talking tanks, here, people - there are SUVs bigger than a Ferret). This was seen tootling down a road in the PacNorthwest and the cop saw it as a photo opportunity, not a reason to call for air cover.

Those of us who collect aren't taking this lying down, as some unelected state officials make rulings based on ignorance, and yes, unreasoning angst. Rather than take up a lot of space with this, I'll put the rest in the Flash Traffic/Extended Entry.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

by John on Jan 23, 2006 | Politics

January 22, 2006

H&I fires 22 Jan 06

Open post for those with something to share. New, complete posts come in below. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

Code Pink, which wants anything other than freedom in the Middle East if it involves anything other than US surrender and roll-over - appropriates Iranian women risking their lives to protest the Mullahs - as if (at best, the most charitable interpretation) the Code Pinkers in the US run the same risks... though, more likely, they just saw pictures of women protesting and it made them all funny in their pants - without considering the differences. Publius Pundit offers it up for you to look at yourself.

The move to evict Justice Souter from his home, to make way for a more tax revenue-generating purpose to serve the public good while benefiting private developers at the cost of the landowner - continues. For more eminent domain stories, see Rhymes with Right and Searchlight Crusade.

Can you *imagine* the noise if we were to even *think* about doing something like this?

This week the Dutch Parliament voted a bill which obliges immigrants to pass a compulsory exam. The Dutch Parliament is also in favour of a proposal to have troublesome youths disciplined and drilled by the army.

From 1 March onwards people who want to settle in the Netherlands (e.g. to join family members or to marry someone living there) will have to pass a preliminary test at the Dutch embassy in their country of origin. In this so-called “integration test” the immigrants have to prove that they have sufficient knowledge of the Dutch language and the geography, history and political system of the Netherlands. The fee for taking the test is 350 euros. Those who do not pass are not allowed to enter the Netherlands. Those who do pass have only taken the first hurdle. After their arrival in the Netherlands they will have to pass a second – more difficult – exam.

See the Brussels Journal blog for the rest.

The Right Place have their new Caption Contest up!

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Medical researchers in combat zones study how to prevent wounds/injuries, and make recommendations. (H/T Raven of And Rightly So) - Fuzzybear Lioness

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The Navy is back in the anti-piracy business...

Carnival of the Recipes is up at Morning Coffee Afternoon Tea - myriad new ways to consume caffeine! That is, if the Caffeine Fascisti don't get in your face about it... see The Agitator for more.

Get a take on the Canadian Elections (yes, they *are* having one) by reading the Blogs of the Red Ensign, nicely aggregated in The Red Ensign Standard. -The Armorer

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by Denizens on Jan 22, 2006 | General Commentary
» Blue Star Chronicles links with: John Kerry and our Wrong Side of the Tracks Military

I guess I should say something about Murtha...

...judging from the email I've been getting, largely sparked by James Webb's NYT OpEd piece, Purple Heartbreakers.

I haven't scoured the archives, but I don't think I've attacked Murtha's Vietnam record. There have been harsh words expressed in this space by others (mostly former Marines or deeply involved with them) about Mr. Murtha's "Marineness" in his current incarnation - which is not quite the same thing as questioning his service in Vietnam. As I said, I'm not going to scour the archives, y'all can do that.

I have attacked Mr. Murtha's policy and pronouncements, and I find his comments regarding "any appearance of a victory" unsettling, though, in context I believe he meant that he since he feels we lost already, he wants us to treat it as a loss, and leave as losers, tails between our legs, dejected and demoralized, so that one, we learn our lesson, and two, the Democrats get the political leverage. He doesn't want us declaring victory and going home - he wants us to wallow in defeat. And if you don't believe my part two is in there - you're fooling yourself.

I don't believe we have lost (we certainly can, however), therefore I think his position leads to bad policy (and losing).

Ah, you say - but you *did* attack Kerry's service. Yes, I did.

While not a Vietnam vet my father is. By his understanding of at least two of Kerry's wounds, Dad would have come back from Vietnam with 8 Purple Hearts (as it was, he came back with 5, all requiring stitches or better, to include a through-and-through of the lower leg.) For then-Lieutenant Kerry to use a policy intended for draftee enlisted (3 Purple Hearts, go home) to clear himself from a combat zone he *volunteered* to go to, while leaving his enlisted crew to finish out their tours facing dangers he no longer wished to face, is simply unacceptable conduct for an officer. Mr. Kerry volunteered multiple times (his enlistment, acceptance of officer training, acceptance of the commission, asking for the combat tour) and for him to leave early is, to this officer, unacceptable conduct.

By my lights, Kerry was a dilettante poseur. He wanted his "Kennedy" credential, and found that the price for it was higher than he was willing to pay - so he ran from it, and when he discovered that he could get laid being a protester, he went for it. No, I don't have much respect for either Senator from Massachusetts.

For those who accosted me with "But, John, was it not *more* honorable for him to leave to go home to protest a war he knew from personal experience to be immoral and unwinnable, than to stay and fight it?" my response is thus:

No.

That is *exactly* why I call him dilettante poseur. He says he went because he was troubled by the war, and wanted to go to see for himself. If this was his all along intent, then staying the whole tour, or resigning, taking his lumps, and fighting his fight would have been the honorable thing to do. He chose to leave early when he found the way to do so, then go chill on an Admirals staff for a while. I dislike David Hackworth, but he at least did something along those lines when he threw it all away and went to Australia - and in his later life, he made it clear he was *still* all about soldiers. Mr. Kerry is all about soldiers when it suits him to be. Which is true of much of the political class, on both sides of the aisle.

Back to the point - the difference between Mssrs Kerry and Murtha is that Kerry waved his credentials at everybody, used them to hammer on President Bush, and made his credentials the issue. Representative Murtha has not. And his detractors should not, in truth. The letter from Marine Corps Headquarters affirming his awards wasn't needed - I know how chintzy the Marines are that way. I saw how difficult it was for a Marine battalion commander to get a 'V' device for a Bronze Star when he was leading a counter-attack against tanks attacking a towed artillery battery.

Former Navy Secretary Webb makes some valid points and slips in some duds - but his central thrust is, in my view, correct. Accept service for what it appears to be. Unless the individual in question makes it the issue, as Mr. Kerry did.

On the flip side - a politician's supporters shouldn't throw it around as a shield against criticism of policy stances, either. It isn't.

by John on Jan 22, 2006 | Politics

More Jetsicles!

More Jetsicles got added to yesterday's album, with reader contributions from Murray of Silent Running and LongTabSigO.

Murray sent us this one: a restaurant in New Zealand.

Of the ones I just added - I really like this one, because of the mental double-take I did when I first saw it.

Click this picture to see the album

If you are an airplane geek - that Mirage shot comes from this French website, Wingshots, which is chock full of some winged goodness. I got the pic elsewhere, but decided to follow copyright and fair use rules.

Click the picture to revisit the album (with come caption fixes, he noted with some asperity).

by John on Jan 22, 2006 | Aircraft