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December 12, 2003

Comments

kaj

"One last thing. If there are any more conspiracy theorists out there, looking for a real reason the Bush administration started the war, look into the stock prices of Kellog Brown and Root (KBR) and their parent company Halliburton Inc. If anyone wants to get a piece of the pie and earn at least 8 times as much as a soldier, look into a job with KBR."

Gives you an idea of the mood among some, doesn't it?

Del

Luke thanks for posting that article - I do believe nothing was altered.

I just wanted to add – the thing that I wish were different is the differences on how groups get treated. It’s a shame and it is a challenge.

Yes it’s true that there is irregularity like this soldier mentioned. I’m not saying it’s right I would like to add that everything must be considered.

Example of why things are like they are:

My son was in Kuwait on 9/11 on an Army base. He was in the Air Force – Sat/Comm. Intel – there were only two Air Force personnel at this Army Fort (my son being one). Most everyone there was Army personnel – thousands of them. Like anything else – each group – Army / Air Force were distinct. Because of the shear numbers – the Army of course has to supply a lot more personnel while the Air Force had to handle my son and his buddy. Both of them shared a trailer – yep it was like a little apartment in a desert.

So you can imagine how the grunts looked upon my son and his buddy in their trailer.

There was a difference between both though equal to the specific group you were in. My son also mentioned that within the Army group – the Special Forces – the guys that ate ‘glass’ also had special privileges – again if in that group – everyone was treated equally.

This has everything to do with logistics, branch, number of personnel and at times specialties.

We all wish that every thing could be equal across the board but sometimes the shear numbers are too overwhelming. I’m sure that eventually things will even out, as the situation gets better.

The one thing I was glad to see was the ingenuity of our soldiers, which we all should be proud of. There ability to try to make things better for themselves and as a unit they really gel together as a team.

We’re doing the right thing and the majority of our armed services believe that whole heartily. We should continue to support them and thank them whenever possible.

"I don't feel that many of the protesters really understand the situation here. I'm here and I don't pretend to fully understand it. The people calling for US troops to pull out of Iraq are foolish. This place would go to hell in a minute if it were not for the stability that troops provide. I believe that the individuals who came to Iraq as human shields should be imprisoned."

Yes Kaj, it does doesn't it. I almost felt like I was reading the experiences of someone in Nam. Adaptating is what they're trained for and it would seem nothings changed as regards to the Air Force (flyboys)... They're still a pack of snobs..... LOL

Considering the latest revelations regarding this company Haliburton it does make one wonder about who the other profiteers are, doesn't it?

Again our hallowed purveyors of the news "The News Media" fails in reporting the other things that are going on over there. It's not just about the killing and dying it's also about the incredible job our people are doing over there. The rebuilding.

I love each and every one our people over there and they make me feel very, very proud. I pray for each and every one of them to come home safe and sound to their families and loved ones.

Sarah Forrester

I posted the survey a while back that stated 4 out of 5 Iraqis mistrusted the American forces. It's troops like these guys that prevented it being 5 out of 5. You make us all proud by doing your job well, but refusing to be brainwashed into supporting Bush.

Chrish

The post of 12/12/03 at 03:45 PM was mine, sorry about that.....

I also wanted to thank you Luke for that article
and like Del I do believe it all true.

Del, I didn't know your son was in the Air Force?
There has always been and always will be some level of strive between the branches. Whether the Navy, Army, Air Force, or Marines we have always knocked each other. I guess it's a kind of a tradition....

Jim

I doubt 4 out of 5 Iraqi's mistrust our soldiers after they meet them.
There needs to be more reporting of the good things happening over there.
Yes, the contractors make a lot of money - maybe too much. I know of someone who considered going over as a pipefitter. He would have got 3 times his normal pay. But he would also lose all of his life and health insurance. (seems it's dangerous duty)

Del

In the situation with my son it was because of his specialization - he was one of a very few in an Army base. He handled the communication link - computer systems - satellite antennas - short wave / microwave antennas between the planes, land forces and even the Predator.

He lived smack among all the 'technology cabs' and antennas and the Air Force provided a trailer for the two of them.

Outside their perimeter were all Army in huge tents.

All the Air Force had to supply was two people while the Army had a huge number.

Of course being in the Army looking inside that perimeter you can't blame them for yelling 'f***-in wing nuts' at em'.

bobo

Chrish - did you mention what branch you were in? Only curious.

Del

To me Chrish sounds like a grunt...

Jarhead???

Alex

Thanks to those who set up the contact and for posting the interview - and to the soldier who gave it! Great to hear a balanced and articulate account of what's going on. I'm glad this soldier is able to feel he is doing some good with his long stint of duty and getting the positive feedback from those he's helping. But as he points out, it's not all about that. I hope it makes some detractors think that someone who is prepared to put his life on the line for his country does not necessarily support those who sent him to do so or believe in their stated reasons for it. Thanks to the soldier for being one of those people - stay safe.

Jim

Here's a hint. It's about what it is. You can't just say it's about the things you want it to be about. It's about hundreds dying to save hundreds of thousands. It's about getting rid of an evil dictator who killed hundreds of thousands of his own people - let alone those in neighboring countries. It's about big business and big contracts. It's about fighting evil. It's about making a country stable in a part of the world that is not. Yes it's as much about making an example of a country as it is finding WMD. It's about 6 months into a process that took Germany and Japan 7 years.

Chrish

Bobo, Del,

Navy, a Sailor... Not a Grunt, not a Jarhead,
nor a Wingnut. We all had our jobs to do and as far as we were concerned the other branches were inferior and there to support us... Can you Imagine that? ha ha ha.....

Jim, I agree the interview shows a BALANCED report of our people over there. Not sure of why they're there, knowing they're doing their jobs (and a damn outstanding job they are doing), a willingness to express their doubts, and irritation for both sides arguing about it. The Haliburton reference and the reference to people saying they should pull out. Oh, sorry, the reference to "not voting for Bush in 2004".

The statement this soldier made that does cause me concern is "I personally feel it will take more than five to ten years for this country to have a stable government and functional economy."
Five to Ten years?? I certainly hope IT WON'T BE THAT LONG... I don't believe I could honestly be in support for that kind of time ....

Del

Hi Chrish,

My reference - jarhead - was one with affection. BTW - Navy - Sailors are 'Squids'! he-he-he...

The amount of time we'll be there is one not to be taken lightly nor with a naive attitude. We will be there for a very long time. My own guess - possibly a few decades. Certainly things will not be like they are today but why do people believe this is any different than...

Japan - Still have a base
Korea - Still at the border
Germany - Still have a base

Most recently remember the Clinton admin especially Wesley Clark (remember him) saying we would be out of the Bosnia/Kosovo situation in a year...

No - we're all going to have to come to terms with the idea that we will be in Iraq and Afghan for a very long time.

Let's not kid ourselves...

Jim

It takes as long as it takes. Yes I think 10 yrs is too long, but 5 is reasonable. But in truth, yes we will probably keep a base there. It will be like Korea, where presidents get elected by badmouthing America and Americans, then when they are in office, they tell us, "hey, I was just kidding. I really like you guys and I would like you to stay and help protect us."

Del

We all wish there were easier ways but with power and with what we need to do come responsibility.

It's a price many are willing to pay for freedom!

Chrish

Del,

I knew "jarhead" was said affectionately just as "flyboy" or "Air Jockey" was said. After all YOU are the father of an "Air Jock", correct? LOL

I knew it was going to be a long time in Iraq I guess I just didn't want to believe 10 years. It had a bad connotation from memories past for me and something I really don't want Our People now in Iraq to have to go through. All the more reason to keep them, Our People, over there in the forefront of the news and in the minds of the people and especially of the Politicians. We cannot forget they are over there, believe it or not, to defend Our Freedom. At least that is what they believe, hope to believe, or wish it is so but, I'm sure, they do have some doubts Why They Are There. Whatever the reason they must know that We Support Them and Their Families.

We can talk, debate, and discuss the reasons or lack of reasons why we are there but, They Are There Now and God protect them all from any harm.
I don't relish the thought of another wall or one traveling around the country stopping at various towns and cities. Yes, I know that's a depressing thought but, nevertheless it's the reality and one I don't wish on any generation.

I'm reminded of a special they had on TV a few years ago about the Vietnam Memorial Wall, it's design, and the work that went in to etching all of the names on it. They showed a young lady who was one of the main artisans doing the etching of the names. she explained about how much concentration, love, and affection she had put into each one of those individual names. She told how she was so into what she was doing that it took her a moment to realize that a particular name she had been etching into the stone was that of her own brother.... At that point she broke down and began to cry as did I.

For me it comes down to Hate The War Not The Warriors. They're there because they believe they are doing right, they are serving Our Country, Defending Our Freedom. Yes, they have doubts, suspicions just like we in my generation and the generations before us did but we still served.

There were also those who opposed and are opposing those wars and God Bless You All For That and don't ever let anybody tell you you can't or intimidate you for standing up. Isn't that Why We Go? So you can stand up!!

In a way you bring a level of conscience and awareness to everyone involved, even if they don't like it, that maybe there is a better way or maybe, just maybe, all is not what we are being told is the truth. "History has a nasty habit of repeating itself" so I am told. If that is the case then Leaders and The People are also part of that history are We not? Is there the slightest possibility that We are repeating History?

For now, I do support Our President and this war but with some reservations as to the reasons Why.

You're correct Jim, we're hated and made out to be the bad guys but when it comes to the profits for themselves they're Our best friends or the best friends of anybody who'll help them profit.

Jim

As far as this debate, everyone has a right to their opinion - that is what America is all about. However, I hate to see soldiers brought into the discussion. Why? Because while there are in harms way, they should not have any doubt or any hesitation about what they are doing. Doubting themselves and their cause could have deadly consequences for them and those they protect. I hate seeing soldiers used as propoganda on any side. I'm proud as Hell of all of them just for the fact that they volunteered. Whether an air jockey or a jarhead, Colonel, Private or Sergeant. I say thank you. Thanks for making the world and thus America safer. Thanks for defeating evil whether it is named Hitler or Hussein or Milosovic. Thanks for making the world think twice about funding or housing terrorists. Thanks and God bless everyone whatever your views may be.

Chrish

Hear, Hear Jim, I'm with ya...
And the same to you and all.

Del

Chrish,

I certainly understand your sentiments. One personal regret I have is never joining the military. This is especially true after seeing what became of my own son after he joined the Air Force. The opportunities that were offered to him were outstanding. The formal education not to mention the discipline he gained cannot be matched. Luckily he embraced it enthusiastically and they rewarded him appropriately. At the time of my turning 18 the draft was ended and it was right after the Vietnam War. It was truly a confusing time and I remember the horrid bashing the military got at that time. Personally I always supported the military especially during the Vietnam era and was always an avid student about the war.

No one wants to be involved in Iraq any more than one has to. I do have to mention that the war in Vietnam and what is going on today in Iraq are totally different situations and circumstances. The Vietnam War was an internal revolution involving countries including the Chinese and the Soviet Union (in the background). I’m not going to get into the why things were done like they were. What I’m trying to get across is that this current situation is a lot different.

As time goes on – as the country and region continues to stabilize – we’ll have to be present to continue the security and peace. Even now the attacks on our own troops are lessening and we continue to safeguard areas one by one.

Soon we’ll have bases set up like we do all over the world where we will have troops coming in and out. It will become part of our overall responsibility to bring freedom to the world.

With power comes responsibility. We all wish there was a better way. Evil must be met with determination and strength as history has taught us many times.

Chrish

Del,

That is the one of the consolation for the war in Iraq. The President and the majority of people do support our troops and our involvement in Iraq.
Adding to that is the fact that the politicians aren't playing armchair generals our military are being allowed to do what they're trained to do without all the political crap we, in Vietnam, had to endure.

Big E

So much for you ex-commie-pats against our C-I-C. You freaks are a dime a dozen. You were probably the whiners when on active duty that got your buddy shot. You got overruled by a higher power. And if any of you E-C-P's bothered to read your bible, then you would know that this war was predicted and our C-I-C is God's chosen one. Before you start ragging on me, be it known that I served faithfully and honorably for 21 years and now my son-in-law is serving his second tour in Iraq. Why don't you interveiw a real solider instead of a want-a-be weekend warrior. Answer because soldiers like my son-in-law will tell you to get bent. Real soldiers go active where the action is. The Guards & reserves are whining because they thought they were safe. Sorry boys & girls you signed on the dotted line. Waaaaa.

rodi

>Real soldiers go active where the action
is.

And real leaders don't duck their military service and force respected journalists to resign for trying to expose the truth

Chrish

Sorry Rodi but, that story just don't fly.
Unless, of course, you're still clinging to
Rathergate?

Jim

Unreal. Exactly Chrish. Another person who automatically believe anything bad said about anyone on the right (especially Bush) must be true. Hilarious.

rodi

Chrish and Jim

You can believe anything you want regarding how Rather obtained his information. The facts remain the same:

Fact:
Bush ducked his military service by "serving" in the Air National Guard, an elite service of the military normally reserved for those with excellent academic performance. (Bush received an SAT score 250 points lower than the average required for admittance to any ivy league institution. He was also a straight "C" student the whole time)

Fact:
Family connections allowed Bush to avoid combat and sneak his way into the an otherwise unattainable unit of the military

Fact:
Nobody can account for large gaps of time that Bush was supposed to be "serving" his time in said unit

Fact:
Bush failed the medical and physical exams required to engage in said service.

Fact:
Bush was mysteriously dismissed from his service so he could return to the business world (where he failed miserably at every single private venture)

Now, as for the evidence behind my statements:

I know this may shock you, but you can find books in your local Borders that have actual photocopies of the real documents that prove Bush's military record was a sham, a lie and a cover up. Even with all the classified documents, there is still enough that can prove this beyond a shadow of a doubt

As for "Rathergate", those that follow journalism know that Rather had always been the most controversial of all the major network anchors. In the days before the GOP dominated the executive offices of the network VP's, this used to be called investigative journalism. Funny how the administrations of Ford, Carter, and even Reagan never tried to punish Rather for his Pulitzer Prize winning pieces that exposed corruption, greed, lies, and misdeeds during the Vietnam era, the Watergate years and the Nicaraguan Contra scandals.

Never before has an administration spent so much time and effort making absolutely sure that journalism that can be detrimental to the ongoing mission and damage public opinion is repressed at all costs. The GOP spent millions of dollars making the reporter, his network, and everyone involved look like crooks for attempting to expose the truth.

I'm not necessarily defending Dan Rather, but simply pointing out that the methods used to destroy his 40 year career rival those of any repressive government that controls its media. Never mind the other 40 years of reporting and all the accomplishments; the public will now always remember him as going down in flames under a shroud of shame.

This is another unprecedented attack on American Democracy By Mr. Bush. Edward R. Murrow would cringe at the idea of the US government abusing its power and exerting its influence to somehow change a network investigation into a President's past activities to a manhunt designed to silence an anchor that refuses to follow the status quo in the name of "freedom and patriotism."

To Jim:
I know. The CBC and I kiss each other's butts and the US networks have a "liberal bias." Yup, it' so liberal that one man that never broke any laws had an illustrious career ruined while a president that breaks established laws like the Clean Air Act, Endangered Species Act and has little or no regard fro any International laws regarding diplomacy continues onwards for another four years.

But to Chrish:
Even if you disagree with me regarding the GOP quest, I know you’ll believe me when I say that the facts about Bush and his past service are just that: facts.

Next time I’m in the book store, I’ll find the book I’m referring to; it’s actually got some fascinating stuff no matter what political views are.


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