Wednesday, May 31, 2006

The Lynch Mob Saddles Up

In the country that prides itself on the concept of innocent until proves guilty there are a good number of people who are more than ready to try convict and hang every Marine involved with the incident in Haditha, Iraq.

They almost seem to relish the arrival of events that if actually true in the fashion that they have been depicted are despicable and the perpetrators should be punished to the full extent of the law.

They are so beside themselves with editorial glee that they can't wait for the entire investigation to occur to pontificate and chastise the USA and in the process undermine the overall efforts of this nation around the world...all in the name of "NEWS" which should be spelled $$$$.

To add to all this mess I just witnessed retired Major General Batiste on "The O'Riley Factor" somehow link this incident with the SECDEF's alleged incompetence. To this viewer his distaste for Secretary Rumsfeld has so consumed this man everything that has gone wrong in the Defense Department is a direct result of the SECDEF's colossal buffoonery. To extend his argument to its silly extreme, the fact that we ran out of copy paper the other day was not because someone in the S4 forgot to order it, it was because the S4 shop was so overburdened with personnel shortages due to the SECDEFs insane management style they couldn't handle their duties.

MG(retired) Batiste used that exact argument to try and pin the responsibility for Abu Griab on Rumsfield. It's really sad when your hatred for someone so clouds your thinking that you are willing to jump to the logical extremes that MG(retired) Batiste is willing to go to, to try and tar the SECDEF further with the brush of scandal.

I think all the poor MG(retired) has managed to do is reveal himself as someone completely obsessed with getting a man he doesn't care for fired and in the meantime his quest merely aids those who are aligned against's pretty sad when you think about it.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Just When You Thought It Was Safe...

Longoria repeats atop Maxim's Hot 100
‘Housewives’ star beats out Lohan, Jolie; she ‘couldn't believe’ her luck...

I'm guessing she has the goods on the editors at Maxim. Read the rest HERE.

Apparently all this adulation has gone to her little head. She now hangs out with people who appeared in "Saved By The Bell" (no not Screech) and bitches about having to pay establishments for services rendered...YIKES!

Why I'll Never Be A Little League Coach

I was reminded the other day exactly why I never want to get involved with coaching baseball at the little league (8-12 year old) level.

I was sitting in a Mexican restaurant minding my own business when I overheard some people at the next table talking very loudly about baseball. I look over and see a table with 4-5 kids aged around 10-12, they are still dressed in their uniforms so I guess they came to eat after the game. Funny thing is, all I can hear is one of the fathers talking about and critiquing his son's performance. Yeah son, you went 2 for 4 with a walk but you're not really driving the ball the way I would like...when we get home after this we're going to get on the trainer and work on your stride (work on your stride?!?)

First of all I wanted to scream, he went 2 for 4 why don't you let the kid enjoy it?!? Second, he's 10 years old how well do you expect him to "drive" the ball anyway...why don't we just be glad he's making contact. Third, if you want to "coach" the kid why don't you just hold on to all that advice till we get to practice...never letting your kid enjoy the game will more than likely drive him away from it.

I must have had very special parents because after I played a game I only got advice or critique if I asked about it first...usually the only discussion was about where we were going to eat. Somehow I managed to learn how to play well enough to be invited to play college baseball...but I never was a meal ticket for my folks so I guess I failed miserably as a ball player.

Somewhere down the line a lot of people have forgotten that these leagues and games are about the kids...they are not some vehicle for their parents to live out old fantasies or the opportunity for Dad to groom his retirement plan/ college fund. If they put half as much effort into things that really mattered they all be much better off...but what the hell do I know anyway?

Yeah, if I was a coach I am afraid I would be in more arguments with folks like the dad mentioned above than I ever would with the umpire...and that's just sad. Almost makes me want to get deployed to Iraq again so I don't have to listen to crap like that...almost...well not really...but I think it would do that dad a lot of good, perspective wise. :-)



Saturday, May 27, 2006

Strike Eagle P0rn

Here's a few shots of the F-15E demo bird that's making the air show circuit this year.



Friday, May 26, 2006

Great Quote for the Weekend.

"It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather, we should thank God that such men lived."
-- George Patton

Girl Friday

Tamara Witmer (PMOTM AUG '05) says have a great holiday weekend and drink another one for Paul.

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Thursday, May 25, 2006

Some Names I'll Always Remember

CW2 Paul Timmer

CW3 Rex Kenyon

CW3 Chuck Fortenberry

As I'm sure you know it's Memorial Day weekend. And I'm sure we'll see gallons of ink spilled and entire forests decimated in the quest to tell us how we should all feel about the sacrifice of people like Paul, Rex and Chuck.

If we are honest with ourselves those articles accomplish nothing, the people who really need those words will never read them and if they did the meaning of them would escape their grasp. If you are reading this the odds are good that you already appreciate the sacrifice of our soldiers in the cause of I am in some respects preaching to the converted.

What I intend to address is the issue of how we honor and remember the sacrifice of these and other soldiers.

Having known these three guys pretty well I can say that they really wouldn't be going to any parades, wreath laying or any other type ceremony unless you forced them I think the best way to honor these guys would be to do the things they would be doing if they were here today. At your BBQ have another Shiner Bock for Chuck, a burger for Paul and some chicken for Rex. See a ball game, go water skiing, go slow in the fast lane on the interstate. It's all these things (even things that piss you and me off) that these guys died to protect...if you want to honor them have some fun and when you get a second or two have a drink on Paul, Rex and Chuck.

I'll see you on the Green!

Fiddlers Green

Halfway down the trail to Hell,
In a shady meadow green

Are the Souls of all dead troopers camped,

Near a good old-time canteen.

And this eternal resting place

Is known as Fiddlers' Green.

Marching past, straight through to Hell

The Infantry are seen.

Accompanied by the Engineers,

Artillery and Marines,

For none but the shades of Cavalrymen

Dismount at Fiddlers' Green.

Though some go curving down the trail

To seek a warmer scene.

No trooper ever gets to Hell

Ere he's emptied his canteen.

And so rides back to drink again

With friends at Fiddlers' Green.

And so when man and horse go down

Beneath a saber keen,

Or in a roaring charge of fierce mêlée

You stop a bullet clean,

And the hostiles come to get your scalp,

Just empty your canteen,

And put your pistol to your head

And go to Fiddlers' Green.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

For All You Art Lovers...

Military artist James Dietz has produced his latest work entitled At The Ready.

I own several of his prints already and I'm looking forward to this one...good stuff!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

I Lost 15 Pounds in Three Weeks on The JRTC Diet



Yes folks, if you are overweight and seem to can't ever loose those extra pounds no matter how hard you try, I have the diet plan for you! It's called the JRTC diet. What is it you ask? Well, it's really very simple. First wear a flack jacket, Kevlar helmet and carry an M-4 rifle wherever you go. Live at least a quarter of a mile away from where you work. Walk to work and everywhere else you go. Work between 16 and 18 hours a day and finally skip all meals except dinner. Dinner will include a unidentifiable chunk of grey meat with blood running out of it and vegetables that have been cooked to the point of having no flavor left in them...yum! Before you know it those unwanted pounds will melt away...along with you sense of humor, patience and ability to deal with idiots.

Honestly the food I received at the Joint Readiness Training Center was by far the worst food I have eaten (or not eaten as the case may be) in the 19 years I've been in the U.S. Army...and that's saying something. One night at dinner the following phrase was spoken, "I can't believe it...they have even managed to fuck up Kool-Aid." Yes it was so bad they couldn't even find a way to mix grape Kool-Aid correctly it was either too weak or was so sweet your teeth would spontaneously rot. Our CSM said the contractor received $8.00 a plate for the food they were feeding us...all I can say is someone is getting rich off of Uncle Sugar, because there is no way in HELL anything close to that is being spent on the food...but other than that things were great! And for those who care the contractor wasn't KBR...KBR took care of our food in Iraq and it was 10 times better than this stuff!

I will now endeavor to be more precise in my description of life at JRTC lest anyone think I was living in a prison camp...There were two hot meals a day available and MRE's anytime I wanted...I did not avail myself of those opportunities so the weight loss was my doing. No one is starving at JRTC...on the other hand the food really did suck.

News the networks ignore...

It's amazing to me the amount of real news that gets ignored. The news that if reported would actually lend context to the arguments about the war in Iraq. Stories like this one from The Rocky Mountain News...but I guess that would be too much to ask for.

Najim Al Jibouri, mayor of Tal Afar, Iraq, hugs Col. H.R. McMaster at a ceremony Friday morning at Fort Carson for the 3rd Armored Cavalry. "Are you truly my friends?" he asked the audience. "Yes. I walk a happier man because you are my friends."

By David Montero, Rocky Mountain News
May 20, 2006
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.

"Thank you."

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.

It was his first trip to the United States, arriving via Washington, D.C., then coming to Colorado Springs with his wife and son.

The mayor was invited as a part of a welcoming ceremony at Fort Carson for those who had just finished another tour in Iraq.

Al Jibouri, dressed in a black suit with a lavender tie, said he was glad to be back among them.

"Are you truly my friends?" he asked through a translator. "Yes. I walk a happier man because you are my friends. You are the world to me. I smell the sweet perfume that emanates from your flower of your strength, honor and greatness in every corner of Tal Afar. The nightmares of terror fled when the lion of your bravery entered our city."

Read the rest HERE or 303-892-5236

I'm Back!

I made it through JRTC in one piece the dreaded plywoodians are no more (till the next rotation) and all the things Americans hold dear have been defended and are safe once more!

In honor of this occasion and because I missed three Fridays in a row, I present an early "Girl Friday"...Davin Lexen


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

6 Days Left

I'm taking a break from the ongoing death and destruction to let everyone know that I'm still alive amongst the aligators and MREs.

I am managed to dispatch a bunch of plywoodians using over 600 rounds of 30mm was a great day for everyone except the plywoodians.

I'll be back and Eva will be back in around 6 days.