01 September 2010

The "combat" troops leave Iraq

Well, I suppose I should be jumping for joy or at least doing cartwheels in the yard.
Why, you may ask. Well, our "combat" troops have now left Iraq. Yep, it is the old "mission accomplished" deal all over again. Except this time we have pulled our "combat"troops out of Iraq.
No doubt Go-bomber is happy and all smiles. I believe he gave a speech the other day. Or was that last night? Hell, I don't keep up with him any more. Not that I ever really did. So, I missed the speech. Big deal, once you have heard him yak you have basically heard all he has to say.
No, that is not "sour grapes" of having voted for him. I didn't vote for him, nor will I ever vote for him. It is just my disgust at the guy. He lied during the campaign and many folks got suckered in by him. He gave a lot of folks false hope. He talked about change, but delivered......what? Basically the third term of old Shrubbie is what.
Be careful about getting overly excited about the "troop reduction" folks. They pulled some neat tricks in Vietnam also.
When I was in Vietnam with the 5th Marine Regiment, we had a radio link to an Army unit. Once a month or sometimes more often, we would drive over to that base and check our radio site ob their base and shoot the breeze for a while. One day as we pulled into their base, one of my buddies said it looked like they had repainted the sign at the main gate. When we stopped at the radio bunker we asked the Army guys about it. Oh they said, didn't we catch the news on AFVN (Armed Forces Radio Vietnam)? Their "old"unit had gone back to the states just as old tricky Dick had said during the campaign for president. He was "bringing the troops home". Ah, we asked the Army guys, if your unit went home, why are you all still here? Well, they replied, it is like this. They took the unit flag, some paperwork and a junior officer and two or three enlisted troops, put them all on a plane and sent them to the states. Now that unit was "back home". Yep, nice little "slight of hand" there. Neat trick, and they got away with it. The media reported the old unit was now back home. They did NOT announce the replacement of that unit however. Very neat trick. And yes, they did get away with it. Even back then, the media only asked certain questions and no further. Today, they ask even less.
The above remembrance brings me back to the idea that our "combat" troops have left Iraq.
Be very careful how that reads folks. The troops who are still in Iraq, if you accept the "news", are not combat troops. No, they are training and security troops.
Well, security can involve combat. If they are attacked, they will fight back. Combat.
The training troops, well, if they do "hands on training", they or the Iraqi troops they are training might get attacked. They will fight back. Combat. The point I am trying to make is that the remaining troops MAY be tasked with training and security, it does not mean that US troops will no longer be involved in combat. The examples I used above are just "worst case" scenarios. No doubt the "training and security" troops could go out on patrols, just as the combat troops have done. There is nothing to stop these remaining troops from going out and looking for combat with the "enemy" forces.
Another question. Once the combat troops from Iraq have been back in the US, how long before they are deployed to Afghanistan? Any ideas? I bet not more than 12 months before they get sent to Afghanistan. Maybe even as little as six months.  They should get at least one year, but ideally, they should not be sent to any war zone, period.

Just a comment or three on a different topic.
Glenn Beck. Yep, old Becky. You all know he had his big rally this past weekend. I have not seen the final numbers as to the attendance, but no doubt he got in the tens of thousands of "tea party" folks to come out for his get together. I have heard estimates of as high as 500,000, but I doubt that number. I'd bet the number was closer to maybe 75,000. Anybody have other numbers?  You can pass them along if you wish.
The thing about the Beckster is that some folks and web sites are making a big joke of him. Now I don't care for his crapola at all, nor do I watch his show. I tried to watch him way back when he first was on CNN Headline News with the half hour show. Even then, it was all I could do to stay with the show for more than five minutes. How he got more air time even on Faux Noise is beyond me. I suppose stupid does sell on TV now days.
OK, so, you now know that I dislike the Beckster and don't watch his TV show, nor do I listen to his radio show. Same goes for Limburger and O'Really, etc and all of Faux Noise. I check in at Faux Noise every so often, just to keep myself from becoming too happy with life. Every so often it seems I need a "downer" just so I don't get to thinking that the media might be getting honest or worth my time.
OK, now the problem, as I see it with Beck, is some sites and their readers are basically calling Beck a joke. Well, yes, he IS a joke. A very sick joke, BUT, do not take him lightly. Same goes for the failin' Palin. While they are jokes, be very wary of them and their followers. If all we do is call them jokes and brush them off, one day we might find that they have taken power and we are really screwed. Big time!
I think that in the 1920's and maybe even the very early 1930's Hitler was seen as a joke by many Germans. And we all know how that played out. So, yes, laugh at the absurdities of  Beck and Palin, Bachmann, etc. But do not take them lightly. These fools are very dangerous. When you laugh at them, remember to tell others why they are such jokes. If you just make light of them, it is too easy for their supporters to brush you off. Let the people know how wrong these clowns are with their twisted versions of history and the distorted "facts" that Beck/Palin spout. That way, we can do even more to knock a few dents into the idiot reich wing of the elephant party. Hey, take down a few of the donkey gang as well. That "tribe" is just as bad as the elephants.
Oh, but while being critical of our dear politicians and the government, be very careful. Now that Go-bomber has declared that "we" can go after anybody at any time in any place, even US citizens, and "silence" them, we have to wonder just when they will start to crack down on things like this little corner  of the internet.
Yes, Go-bomber has said that he will go after anybody who is deemed to be a "threat" to the US. The prime example is the American born guy who is supposedly with the al-Qaeda in Yemen. Go-bomber says he has the right to kill anybody like that person at any time in any place. By extension, that means that he thinks he could do whatever to silence or imprison folks like me. Yep, being critical of the "powers that be" just could become a crime here at home  now.
Gee, aren't you all just so very happy we all got that neat "change" back in November of 2008? I sure as hell am.................NOT.
Well, no matter what Go-bomber thinks, this corner will continue to have my rants posted on it as long as I have something to say or until the old iMac quits. I don't plan on going away quietly. Nor do I plan on quitting, hell I never held any elected office, let alone a governorship. Yes, that was a "dig" at falin' Palin.
semper fi

29 August 2010

The non mosque and Beck, more random rants

Well it seems that I am going to have to comment on the non mosque planned for New York City.
You all know what I am talking about here. Yes, the "ground zero mosque". Yep, THAT mosque.
Well, for starters, it is NOT a mosque. It is a community center. The community center will include a basketball court and I even read that it is to have a swimming pool. It will have an area set aside for prayer.
Now while I do not live in New York city or state, I don't see why a community center could be a bad thing. As I understand it, it is planned as a place for ALL people to meet and possibly come to understand each other better. To my way of thinking this can only be a good idea.
Oh, some may say, the imam who is behind this community center is a "terrorist". Well, if that is so, why was he on a program on Faux Noise where he was proclaimed as a "good" Muslim?
The "idea"(??) that some how the "ground zero" in New York, New York is some sort of "sacred" ground is, to me, obscene. The whole bit of calling the site of the now destroyed World Trade Center as "ground zero" is incorrect. Until 9/11, or very shortly there after, the term "ground zero" had only been used to describe the place where a nuclear bomb had been detonated.  Now this term is being used to describe an attack by nineteen radicals, the majority of whom were from Saudi Arabia, NOT Afghanistan or Iraq.
Well, I suppose that calling this site "ground zero" is just another example of how "9/11 changed everything". Yes, words mean what the writer or speaker wants them to mean, forget anything like dictionary definitions or past usage, that is now all different. Yep, thanks to 9/11, ALL is changed.
The "controversy over this community center, which is located far enough from the "sacred ground" that neither can be seen from the other. There is NO direct line of sight between the two. Also, there are many other businesses much closer to this new "sacred ground" that many people would not even care to visit. This IS New York city, where strip clubs can be across the street from a church. Why so upset over this community center?
Well, this weekend Washington D.C. had the "honor" of hosting the Glenn BEck "restoring our honor" rally. From what I have read on it, the turn out was fair, about 200,000 or so people. The National Park Service does not give counts for these sort of events according to most reports I have seen. No doubt Mr. Beck and Ms. Palin will try to claim numbers closer to one million. No doubt some "tea party" folks will echo that claim. Personally, I doubt they had more than 200,000 IF they had that many.
Now there were restrictions placed on the speakers. No kidding, honest, they were told that it could not be a political rally. That requirement was put on the rally by the main beneficiary of the rally. The group, Special Operations Warrior Foundation (SOWF) placed the "no politics" deal on the rally. This organization is not a political outfit and they do not want to be associated with a political event.
Money raised from the rally will be donated to SOWF, but, only after all expenses are paid. You know how that goes, they first have to pay form items like the port-a-potties and other items used by and for the rally. I wonder if "expenses" also includes the "speakers fees" that falin' Palin will collect for her yak to the folks who attended the rally.
Now maybe I am just some far out radical "professional" leftist, but I would think that the former half-term quitter of a governor would have given the speech for free. Oh, I'd have no trouble having her air fare paid by the organizers of the rally. Of course that would mean she would have to fly coach. Well, it was always the only way I ever flew, so if it was good enough for me, it sure would be good enough for her. Of course, I was never, nor will I ever be, a "celebrity".  Then again, to my old fashioned thinking, neither is a half-term quitter any sort of "celebrity".
Yes, you can now see what I have finally come to see, old charlie (me) actually IS a member of the "professional" left.  Yes, I see no problem with the proposed community center a few blocks away from and unseen from the "sacred" site of the 9/11 "ground zero". I also fail to see how a half-term quitter of a governor is a "celebrity" of any sort.
All this of course puts me deeply into the "professional" left in things here in old 'Merikkka, 2010. Yes, I believe that meeting and learning about people from different cultures and religions is a good thing. I believe that allowing people of different religions and cultures to open a community center, all people welcome, is a good thing for all of us.
I still find it odd though, that just having an open mind, a curious mind, makes me part of some "professional" left. All my nearly 63 years on this planet, I had thought that having an open mind, a curious mind, was just a sign of being curious and eager to learn. I never had any idea that I was in any way, being "professional" in that.
semper fi