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Pentagon: US Forces Removed 250 Tons of Al Qaqaa Explosives
A Different Drummer ^ | 29 October 2004 | Nicholas Stix

Posted on 10/29/2004 11:15:15 AM PDT by mrustow

In a noontime press conference today at the Pentagon, Pentagon spokesman Larry Dirita and Army Maj. Austin Pearson, an ammunition management officer who was at the Iraqi ammunition depot Al Qaqaa in spring, 2003 with the Army 3rd Infantry Division, cast doubt on the New York Times/CBS News report alleging that 377 tons of Iraqi munitions had disappeared from the site, after it had come under American control in April, 2003.

Maj. Austin estimated that his unit removed 200-250 tons of munitions, and Mr. Dirita emphasized that reports that 141 tons of RDX explosives were at the facility under IAEA seal may be mistaken, and that perhaps only three tons of RDX were at the facility.

An ABC News report by Martha Raddatz and Luis Martinez on Wednesday, first revealed the 138-ton discrepancy, which could reduce the amount of Al Qaqaa explosives in question to approximately 239 tons. The Raddatz/Martinez report also emphasized that the IAEA seals were not secure; weapons could have been removed through unsealed ventilation slats. Together with the 200-250 tons that Maj. Austin’s unit removed from Al Qaqaa, the new information could explain the disposition of virtually the entire weapons cache at Al Qaqaa.

Reporters at the news conference continued to ask Mr. Dirita and Maj. Pearson about explosives under IAEA seal, ignoring the updated reports by Dirita, Pearson, and ABC News, questions which continued to assume the truth of the most negative initial reports.

Mr. Dirita emphasized that at present, no one knows exactly what happened to the entire Al Qaqaa weapons cache.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaqaa; ammogate; austinpearson; cbs; dod; hmx; kerrylies; larrydirita; newyorktimes; octobersurprise; qaqaa; rdx
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1 posted on 10/29/2004 11:15:15 AM PDT by mrustow
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To: mrustow



KERRY CAMPAIGN IS CRUMBLING!!!

KERRY OTHER-THAN-HONORABLE DISCHARGE FROM THE US NAVY!!!!


MUAHAHAHAHAHA FOUR MORE YEARS BABY!!!!!


2 posted on 10/29/2004 11:16:06 AM PDT by Josh in PA
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To: Josh in PA

I hope you're right, but I'm not about to celebrate prematurely. Remember what happened once in New Hampshire, when Bob Dole went ot bed too early?


3 posted on 10/29/2004 11:17:39 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: All; Admin Moderator

A FReepmail I just got........




From F0URM0R3 | 10/29/2004 2:12:34 PM EDT replied

John Kerry isn't siding with the IAEA. The IAEA warned the administration to secure the explosives at Al Qaqaa. The Bush administration did not do their jobs. The troops in Iraq are now being killed with those weapons. The Bush administration is blaming the troops for not securing the weapons.







F0URM0R3 <<<<<<<<<< TROLL

F0URM0R3 <<<<<<<<<< TROLL

F0URM0R3 <<<<<<<<<< TROLL

F0URM0R3 <<<<<<<<<< TROLL


4 posted on 10/29/2004 11:17:52 AM PDT by OXENinFLA
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To: Josh in PA

Yes - I will be walking on airif the discharge rumors pan out - that will take away 95% of the "hero's" campaign...


5 posted on 10/29/2004 11:18:40 AM PDT by trebb (Ain't God good . . .)
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To: All

BTTT


6 posted on 10/29/2004 11:22:01 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: mrustow

I think that in these last few days the Kerry campaign is just trying to put any story out into the MSM. They know that in the few hours or days that it takes to verify, they already have their wolves booking time to discredit Bush in anyway they can. But they never address the issues again, when the TRUTH comes out!


7 posted on 10/29/2004 11:23:01 AM PDT by all4one (Dear Pres. Reagan, time for you to call in your favors with St. Peter - Nov. 2nd is almost here!)
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To: trebb

Is there something new on this? The stories in the Sun about the discharge and Hanoi connection have been swamped by other stories like al QaQaa have been ignored. The only new I've heard is that Kerry slipped up and admittd hs records have not been released.


8 posted on 10/29/2004 11:23:37 AM PDT by topdog1
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To: Peacerose; Shermy; Timesink; seamole; Fred25; Free ThinkerNY; ouroboros; ChaseR; A.J.Armitage; ...

Breaking News!


9 posted on 10/29/2004 11:24:01 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: mrustow

Wow, more twists than a good spy novel.

first it was taken by looters ... no, taken before ... no, it was there after ...

Pentagon removed it???? Game over.


10 posted on 10/29/2004 11:24:17 AM PDT by WOSG (George W Bush / Dick Cheney - Right for our Times!)
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To: all4one
I think that in these last few days the Kerry campaign is just trying to put any story out into the MSM. They know that in the few hours or days that it takes to verify, they already have their wolves booking time to discredit Bush in anyway they can. But they never address the issues again, when the TRUTH comes out!

Exactly! What was the line (from Ben Franklin, IIRC): "A lie can get halfway around the world, before the truth gets its pants on." And by the time the truth gets on its way, more lies are in circulation.

11 posted on 10/29/2004 11:26:09 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: topdog1

There is a forum on swiftvet site where a supposed Navy Chief claims they found the person who issued an "Other than honorable" discharge to kerry. Still rumor mode, but would be great if it pans out...


12 posted on 10/29/2004 11:26:17 AM PDT by trebb (Ain't God good . . .)
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To: OXENinFLA

Thanks. F0URM0R3 is no longer with us.


13 posted on 10/29/2004 11:26:55 AM PDT by Admin Moderator
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To: mrustow

But did the 3rd Division troops remove the material from AL Qa Qaa or destroy it at the the explosives testing area?


14 posted on 10/29/2004 11:27:23 AM PDT by chemical_boy
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To: mrustow
I posted this earlier on another thread: I'd appreciate your comments if I've missed something.

No one seems to be picking up on what I beleive was obvious from Major Austin Pearson's comments at the Pentagon Press Conference.

The Major saw NO IAEA marked explosives (PETN/RDX/MDX) in the opened bunkers that he emptied of 200-250 tons of various types of explosives!

That fact leads to two conclusions: either it wasn't there when he arrived (meaning Saddam and/or the Russians got rid of it prior to war) or it was under lock and key in the bunkers he didn't empty (meaning we controlled it because there was no looting going on.)

Thus either the "bad stuff" was gone when we got there, or it was destroyed by US coalition forces after the locked bunkers were opened, and no one noted that some of had IAEA stickers.

If I've missed something, let me know.....

15 posted on 10/29/2004 11:29:50 AM PDT by HardStarboard (Surrounded by Kerry/Edwards Signs in Washington State)
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To: mrustow

Heh heh heh--this is rich. As noted here at FR earlier in the week, the real number of missing "boom" material was possibly closer to 3 tons. Nice to see that validated.


16 posted on 10/29/2004 11:33:13 AM PDT by The Toad
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To: mrustow

Thanks. I think that what is important here is NOT the partisan spin on this issue, it is that the facts come out on this. Bottom line: The explosives were there, now they aren't. Who has them? Our troops over there don't care about the spin, they care about their safety.


17 posted on 10/29/2004 11:36:09 AM PDT by conserv13
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To: trebb

c'mon, noone believes he was a hero anymore, even the rats.


18 posted on 10/29/2004 11:36:19 AM PDT by epluribus_2
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To: WOSG
Wow, more twists than a good spy novel.

first it was taken by looters ... no, taken before ... no, it was there after ...

Pentagon removed it???? Game over.

I wonder what really happened. We may never know. And who knows; the surprises may not yet be over.

19 posted on 10/29/2004 11:42:24 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: chemical_boy
But did the 3rd Division troops remove the material from AL Qa Qaa or destroy it at the the explosives testing area?

Apparently, they removed it from Al Qaqaa AND destroyed it at Dogwood in June.

20 posted on 10/29/2004 11:44:39 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: HardStarboard

Since the IAEA seals were insecure, those bunkers are ultimately an unknown quantity.


21 posted on 10/29/2004 11:46:17 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: trebb

"There is a forum on swiftvet site where a supposed Navy Chief claims they found the person who issued an "Other than honorable" discharge to kerry."

PowerLine is now reporting this too... hold your breath. NavyChief is a prolific poster to the SVPT forums... I don't know how his other postings have turned out or how he would know this, but we can hope.


22 posted on 10/29/2004 11:47:29 AM PDT by topdog1
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To: Snow Bunny; GOPJ; elenchus; geaux; glock rocks; Kevin Curry; Gracey; TomServo; Texaggie79; ...

Breaking News!


23 posted on 10/29/2004 11:47:29 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: mrustow

I heard Stephanopoulos on the radio this AM... he said the channel 5 video is DEFINITIVE. That's the MSM spin for now.


24 posted on 10/29/2004 11:49:14 AM PDT by topdog1
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To: 68-69TonkinGulfYachtClub; harpseal; Mercuria; MadIvan; brat; AppyPappy; Demidog; ...

Breaking News!


25 posted on 10/29/2004 11:49:24 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: topdog1
I heard Stephanopoulos on the radio this AM... he said the channel 5 video is DEFINITIVE. That's the MSM spin for now.

Wow! He was patient. I was wondering when he would show his true colors. So, what is he saying -- that his colleague Martha Raddatz is full of crap?

26 posted on 10/29/2004 11:51:15 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: rintense; PRND21; kattracks; Billie; Mark17; Le-Roy; Clinton8r; Hillary's Lovely Legs; LarryLied; ..

Breaking News!


27 posted on 10/29/2004 11:51:56 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: codeword; dennisw; veronica; onyx; Diogenesis; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pokey78; rockfish59; ...

Breaking News!


28 posted on 10/29/2004 11:52:37 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: patriot5186; jennyp; Verginius Rufus; RightWhale; Archie Bunker on steroids; shield; The Raven; ...

Breaking News!


29 posted on 10/29/2004 11:53:26 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: rb22982; My Favorite Headache; Squire; snopercod; Arleigh; ppaul; Brian Allen; beowolf; eFudd; ...

Breaking News!


30 posted on 10/29/2004 11:59:28 AM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: princess leah; Johnny Gage; Nick Danger; Asmodeus; Belial; HAL9000; ~EagleNebula~; Azzurri; ...

Breaking News!


31 posted on 10/29/2004 12:05:30 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: RasterMaster; okie01; Torie; GeronL; Faraday; LibWhacker; Mike Darancette; gwmoore; kylaka; ...

Breaking News!


32 posted on 10/29/2004 12:06:10 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: I_Had_Enough; Lancey Howard; 2Jedismom; b4its2late; StoneColdGOP; OKCSubmariner; BlueDogDemo; ...

Breaking News!


33 posted on 10/29/2004 12:06:57 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: ALOHA RONNIE; Old_Professor; lsucat; Chairman_December_19th_Society; luvzhottea; Lazamataz; ...

Breaking News!


34 posted on 10/29/2004 12:07:45 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: healey22; HiTech RedNeck; Patriot76; blam; L.N. Smithee; fella; MissAmericanPie; glc1173@aol.com; ..

Breaking News!


35 posted on 10/29/2004 12:08:23 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: mrustow

Bottom line up front: In my informed opinion, this press conference presented a true and accurate accounting of what happened to the ammunition in question.

As many of you know, my unit did similar ammunition removal operations to those described by MAJ Pierson at the Pentagon press conference today (though not in the same area). As he was speaking, I realized he commanded the facility that we hauled both US and captured Iraqi ammunition from and to. Everything he's describing is consistent with my experience. I toured his captured ammunition holding area (CAHA) as part of our preparation for that mission. It was huge. It was later destroyed by a fire as he describes because White Phosphorous ammunition gets very volatile when left exposed to the weather. We lost several trucks to WP rounds getting mixed in with the HE and cooking off. At the CAHA, they had a special pit (two to three stories deep) to handle WP rounds that cooked off, but since the WP was mixed with the high explosives, the fire started. It happened in other CAHAs as well. In fact, if memory serves, a CAHA controlled by the USMC went up the same week Dogwood blew.

I guarantee that right now folks are digging through the records of our reports of our captured ammunition hauling operations to find all references to explosives (as opposed to ammunition). Those reports will take a while to get through, but they'll get through them. I bet every soldier in Pierson's unit is being sought out to be interviewed by investigators, too. The Major probably didn't handle a lot of the ammo himself, but his soldiers will have handled it all.

I notice from the press conference that the press weanies are looking for every excuse to discredit or diminish his unit's efforts in defense of our country.

Remember the terrorists that tried to claim THEY took the ammo? Who do they want to win this election? Who does CBS, NYT, and NBC want to win this election? Who do you believe?


36 posted on 10/29/2004 12:08:37 PM PDT by No Longer Free State
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To: RikaStrom; ctonious; Cincinatus' Wife; dubyaismypresident; bulldog905; Askel5; eFudd; ...

Breaking News!


37 posted on 10/29/2004 12:09:15 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: OXENinFLA

F0URM0R3 ..........no such user///


38 posted on 10/29/2004 12:13:49 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (A Proud member of Free Republic ~~The New Face of the Fourth Estate since 1996.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

MODS already took care of him (it)....


39 posted on 10/29/2004 12:14:45 PM PDT by OXENinFLA
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To: OXENinFLA

Thanks for the reply...


40 posted on 10/29/2004 12:18:29 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (A Proud member of Free Republic ~~The New Face of the Fourth Estate since 1996.)
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To: No Longer Free State
Thanks for your most enlightening post.

I don’t really know whom to believe, but I knew that something stunk about this story from the start (starting with the timing), and Ralph Peters wrote a great column in yesterday’s NY Post explaining how. The socialists have been running “October Surprises” since last year, which is why this race is so tight, in the first place, and Qaqaa was just the newest variety.

41 posted on 10/29/2004 12:57:44 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: mrustow
A Different Drummer is not exactly a major news source. Have any of the major media reported the DoD press conference? Fox? Anyone?
42 posted on 10/29/2004 1:09:24 PM PDT by Gideon7
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To: Brian Allen; joathome; Common Tator; Landru; Billthedrill; headsonpikes; DWSUWF; erizona; SuziQ; ...

Breaking News!


43 posted on 10/29/2004 1:09:45 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: Josh in PA
Charles Johnson posted on LGF:

Just about to be broadcast: a Pentagon press conference by Major Austin Pearson (sp?), who will say that the US Army disposed of at least 200 tons of explosives from Al-Qaqaa.

Watching on Fox News right now, I notice that the press room is almost empty; I can only see 7 or 8 occupied seats.

44 posted on 10/29/2004 1:12:08 PM PDT by Gideon7
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To: Gideon7
A Different Drummer is not exactly a major news source. Have any of the major media reported the DoD press conference? Fox? Anyone?

It's bad enough being ignorant, but to brag about one's ignorance? This guy beat Fox, and happens to be one of America's most important journalists. It's people with attitudes like yours, that accounts for the power of the New York Times and CBS News.

45 posted on 10/29/2004 1:12:27 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: homeschool mama; AnnaZ; aristeides; editor-surveyor; a_federalist; Grampa Dave; Alas Babylon!; ...

Breaking News!


46 posted on 10/29/2004 1:15:48 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: mrustow

Hey I like Nicholas Stix as much as anyone. I was just wondering if any of the MSM alphabet networks have picked up on his scoop.


47 posted on 10/29/2004 1:16:09 PM PDT by Gideon7
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To: Gideon7
Oh. Sorry. I'm sure Fox has, because I watched the press conference on it, and thought I saw a quickie story from them somewhere. They also were doing repeats and follow-ups afterwards, and since that was three hours ago, I'm sure their Web site had a story on it. But let's check it out ...

I don't believe this! All they've got is a story on some viewers' reactions to the story. The front page is devoted to the new alleged Osama bin Laden tape.

Fox Viewers Respond to Qaqaa Story

CBS probably has a story up at their Web site, though it may not have much to do with the truth.

48 posted on 10/29/2004 1:29:15 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: Valin; ken5050; MHGinTN; JudyB1938; RnMomof7; rwfromkansas; JulieRNR21; Robert A. Cook, PE; ...

Breaking News!


49 posted on 10/29/2004 1:30:41 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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To: MarkWar; ambrose; wcbtinman; Bella_Bru; Thorn11cav; Mind-numbed Robot; RooRoobird14; ...

Breaking News!


50 posted on 10/29/2004 1:33:08 PM PDT by mrustow ("And when Moses saw the golden calf, he shouted out to the heavens, 'Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!'")
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