Skip to comments.A Few of FR's Finest....Every Day....02-21-05....Military Monday
Posted on 02/20/2005 7:45:58 PM PST by The Mayor
1) Click on the graphic to open the Calendar.
First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First! First!
February 21, 2005
The news bulletin commanded attention. Several inmates had escaped from a penitentiary. They were armed and considered extremely dangerous. A police spokesman stressed to the community the importance of caution. He said, "These men are desperate. They have nothing to lose. They have killed and could kill again."
Deuteronomy 7 contains a far more serious warning. Overall, the passage is a positive expression of blessing. It shows the willingness of God to help those who trust Him. But that's not the whole picture. Did you catch the "news bulletin" in verse 10? The Lord alerted Israel to be on the lookoutnot for bad men roaming the streets but for a good God who will destroy all those who hate Him.
It's true. Evil men are not the only ones to be feared. We are also to fear our good God. Even though He is merciful and full of compassion, His awesome holiness makes all other kinds of fear look mild by comparison.
We might not like to face this sobering truth. But God will not always be patient with those people who have no love or respect for Him. That's a news bulletin we can't afford to miss. Mart De Haan
Live today as if you will stand before God tomorrow.
Hi The Mayor! :)
Happy Monday to you!
Wow! Yes you are!
Good morning, Mayor!
Blessed day to you and yours.
Aw, lucky you! :-)
I lost one of my soldiers this weekend in a vehicle bombing...he was just 21. He was humble and had a great sense of humor. And a deep belief in what he was doing...
God bless our military and the gallant sacrifices they make on a daily basis in order to preserve our freedoms.
The knowledge that they understand why they are fighting is the only thing that eases the hurt of those who are left behind, other than the fact that he is in a better place!!
Good Morning Your Honor!
With the Deepest of Honor!
A fine list of fine FReepers. It's nice to have pictures with some of the more familiar names here on FR. Thanks and God bless those serving in the military and their families.
Thank you, Mayor!
That is very touching...
God love all of the members of our armed forces!
This may have been posted already.
Its worth posting again. This is the type of Gen. I would have liked to serve with.
Return to Iraq
With Generals Like This, Who Needs Cheerleaders?
We carried on page] of the July/August 2003 Follow Me a heartfelt Major Genera] 1. N. Mattis to the] st Division Marines entering combat in here is another letter from General Mattis to Marines, this one on their ret. He is indeed an eloquent letter writer-and cheerleader extraordinaire.
Subject: FW: MGen. Mattis' letter to Marines-Return to Iraq
Letter to All Hands,
We are going back in to the brawl. We will be relieving the magnificent Soldiers fighting under the 82nd Airborne Division, whose hard won successes in the Sunni Triangle have opened opportunities for us to exploit. For the last year, the 82nd Airborne has been operating against the heart of the enemy's resistance. It's appropriate that we relieve them: When it's time to move a piano, Marines don't pick up the piano bench - we move the piano. So this is the right place for Marines in this fight, where we can carryon the legacy of Chesty Puller in the Banana Wars in the same sort of complex environment that he knew in his early years.
Shoulder to shoulder with our comrades in the Army, Coalition Forces and maturing Iraqi Security Forces, we are going to destroy the enemy with precise firepower while diminishing the conditions that create adversarial relationships between us and the Iraqi people.
This is going to be hard, dangerous work. It is going to require patient, persistent presence. Using our individual initiative, courage, moral judgment and battle skills, we will build on the 82nd Airborne's victories. Our country is counting on us even as our enemies watch and calculate, hoping that America does not have warriors strong
enough to withstand discomfort and danger. You, my fine young men, are going to prove the enemy wrong - dead wrong. You will demonstrate the same uncompromising spirit that has always caused the enemy to fear America's Marines.
The enemy will try to manipulate you into hating all Iraqis. Do not allow the enemy that victory. With strong discipline, solid faith, unwavering alertness, and undiminished chivalry to the innocent, we will carry out this mission. Remember, I have added, "First, do no harm" to our passwords of "No Better Friend, No Worse Enemy." Keep your honor clean as we gain information about the enemy from the Iraqi people. Then, armed with that information and working in conjunction with fledgling Iraqi Security Forces, we will move precisely against the enemy elements and crush them without harming the innocent.
This is our test-our Guadalcanal, our Chosin Reservoir, our Hue City. Fight with a happy heart and keep faith in your comrades and your unit. We must be under no illusions about the nature of the enemy and the dangers that lie ahead. Stay alert, take it all in stride, remain sturdy, and share your courage with each other and the world. You are going to write history, my fine young Sailors and Marines, so write it well.
Major General, U. S. Marines
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who
was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Sgt. Carlos J. Gil, 30, of Orlando, Fla., died Feb. 18, in Humaniyuh, Iraq from
injuries sustained from an improvised explosive device detonation. Gil was assigned
to the 377th Transportation Company, 181st Transportation Battalion, Mannheim,
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public
Affairs at (703) 692-2000.
How to Display the Flag
flag hanging over street1. When the flag is displayed over the middle of the street, it should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street or to the east in a north and south street.
crossed staffs2. The flag of the United States of America, when it is displayed with another flag against a wall from crossed staffs, should be on the right, the flag's own right [that means the viewer's left --Webmaster], and its staff should be in front of the staff of the other flag.
flag at half mast3. The flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. By "half-staff" is meant lowering the flag to one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff. Crepe streamers may be affixed to spear heads or flagstaffs in a parade only by order of the President of the United States.
sharing staff with other flags4. When flags of States, cities, or localities, or pennants of societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the United States, the latter should always be at the peak. When the flags are flown from adjacent staffs, the flag of the United States should be hoisted first and lowered last. No such flag or pennant may be placed above the flag of the United States or to the right of the flag of the United States.
flag suspended over sidewalk 5. When the flag is suspended over a sidewalk from a rope extending from a house to a pole at the edge of the sidewalk, the flag should be hoisted out, union first, from the building.
flag on staff6. When the flag of the United States is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony, or front of a building, the union of the flag should be placed at the peak of the staff unless the flag is at half-staff.
flag draping casket7. When the flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.
flag other than being flown from staff8. When the flag is displayed in a manner other than by being flown from a staff, it should be displayed flat, whether indoors or out. When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag's own right, that is, to the observer's left. When displayed in a window it should be displayed in the same way, that is with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street. When festoons, rosettes or drapings are desired, bunting of blue, white and red should be used, but never the flag.
flag carried in a procession9. That the flag, when carried in a procession with another flag, or flags, should be either on the marching right; that is, the flag's own right, or, if there is a line of other flags, in front of the center of that line.
flags in a group of flags10. The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of States or localities or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs.
US flag with foreign flags11. When flags of two or more nations are displayed, they are to be flown from separate staffs of the same height. The flags should be of approximately equal size. International usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace.
flag in church or auditorium12. When displayed from a staff in a church or public auditorium on or off a podium, the flag of the United States of America should hold the position of superior prominence, in advance of the audience, and in the position of honor at the clergyman's or speaker's right as he faces the audience. Any other flag so displayed should be placed on the left of the clergyman or speaker (to the right of the audience).
flag on car13. When the flag is displayed on a car, the staff shall be fixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the right fender.
flag hanging from window14. When hung in a window where it is viewed from the street, place the union at the head and over the left shoulder.
Huh. Got HIM, didn't I?
I am SO sorry to hear that!!!
21.....SO young. Are you able to be in contact with his parents? I think I already know the answer...
It is tragic...I don't know his parents, I had only been writing to him.
God rest his soul.
I'll pray for his family...
Good morning ALL.
Love that sign..
Hi Ya Tonk..
Yes, the pics go a ways back. I think Billie made 15 groups of them and is always working on another.
Thank you Aqua! I was suprised it hit the front page.
Thank you Dubya..!
You smoked him!
I'm Thirty-Something - guess that's not nearly as good as First! First! First! First! etc :)
Your tagline is way too cute. :)
God Bless our Mighty Military and Happy Presidents Day (3 out of the last 4 isn't too bad!)
So many veterans, too few buglers
Project seeks volunteers to fill the gap
BATH, N.Y. - Once the pastor intoned, "May he rest in peace," a Marine Corps honor guard lifted the flag off Thomas Wagners casket and held it aloft. Right on cue, from an adjacent hilltop at Bath National Cemetery, there rose a stirring bugle call.
Played by an American Legion post chaplain, the Civil War dirge known as taps endures as a final salute to fallen veterans most of whom, like Mr. Wagner, were warriors long ago.
"For the families of those who served, it adds a beautiful, somber tone, a feeling of finality," said Fran Look, a World War II paratrooper who performs at a dozen funerals each year and played at Mr. Wagners ceremony.
With an average of 1,800 U.S. veterans of World War II, Korea and Vietnam now dying every day, along with a steady stream of casualties in Iraq, live renditions of taps at military funerals have become a relative rarity.
The 24-note melody is usually delivered digitally via a compact disc player placed near the grave or, increasingly since 2003, a Pentagon-approved, push-button "ceremonial bugle" that anyone can mimic playing by raising it to their lips.
The armed forces have about 500 musicians who perform taps, but many of them have been dispatched to the Middle East. A few thousand civilian volunteers in the Bugles Across America group also fill in wherever they can.
But its well known that there arent nearly enough buglers to go around.
Now, to spotlight the scarcity and help address it, horn players are planning a dramatic musical performance, called the Echo Taps project.
Stretched across 41 miles between two national cemeteries in rural western New York, hundreds of musicians will play a cascading arrangement of taps on Armed Forces Day, May 21.
"Once the first bugler plays the first three notes, the second bugler will start and then, three notes later, the next," said Les Hampton, a Corning Inc. engineer who served on a Navy destroyer in the Vietnam War. "If we have a bugler every 10th of a mile, or 410 buglers, the rate of sound traveling through the valley would be 60 miles an hour and last 41 minutes."
The Echo Taps projects goals are to enlist more volunteer buglers, honor military service and raise the profile of Americas 120 national cemeteries.
Its open to all brass horns, from trombones to mellophones. A mile-long span in Coopers Plains will be devoted to tubas in memory of a tuba-loving soldier from the village who died young.
The song will start up at Woodlawn National Cemetery in Elmira and bind a string of small towns from Painted Post and Campbell to Savona and Bath. Organizers hope to get a mention in the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest line of brass instruments playing the same tune.
"Each bugler has to be within audible distance," Mr. Hampton said. "Where its hilly, where we have a lot of bends in the roads and when we go through Corning, where theres a lot of traffic, were going to have buglers closer."
Already, more than 500 musicians, some from as far off as California, have said theyll play. The more the better, said Mr. Hampton.
"If we get 2,000, we will have them all in there."
The seed for the project was planted two years ago when two buglers happened to show up for the same funeral, and played a duet. Mr. Hampton and the honor guard commander, Gerry McDonald, came away impressed and wondered what a multi-instrument tribute would sound like.
Since 2000, families of all honorably discharged veterans have been entitled under a federal law to a two-person uniformed funeral honor guard, the folding and presentation of the flag and the playing of taps.
Staff Sgt. Allen Moon plays taps at up to 500 funerals a year as part of an honor guard burial detail with the Stratton Air National Guard base in Scotia, 15 miles from Albany.
The whole service is moving, he said. "But well see a lot where the whole mood will change when someone starts playing taps. Thats when the memories of the veteran, and their service to the country, start to come back."
Bugles Across America, which was formed in suburban Chicago four years ago to recruit taps players, now has 3,800 people to call on nationwide. So far, theyve performed at 45,000 funerals.
As the funeral for Mr. Wagner, who served with the Marines in Korea in the mid-1950s, quickly wound down on a sunny but 5-degree afternoon, the bugler, Mr. Look, an 80-year-old veteran of the Battle of the Bulge, emerged from his car wearing thick gloves with the fingertips cut off.
The solemn notes he played rolled down the hill, lined with white marble gravestones, and resonated through the 138-year-old cemetery where 13,000 veterans and their spouses lie.
Meantime, two Marines held the flag horizontally, then folded it with precision and presented it to Mr. Wagners sister, Mary Keniston. "Its a farewell with a lot of character," she said.
Feb. 21, 2005
Brother of Mission crewman who died in WWII found
MISSION, Texas - The brother of a Navy crewman from South Texas who was killed during World War II says he would like his sibling's remains to be buried with his fallen comrades.
James "Red" Hall, 87, learned through an article in Sunday's edition of The (McAllen) Monitor that the Navy had recovered and identified the remains of his brother, whose plane was shot down over western Alaska in 1942.
The remains of Seaman 2nd Class Dee Hall and six other crewmen were found about four years ago on the northwest face of Kiska Volcano in the Aleutian Islands of western Alaska.
Red Hall said he was surprised by the news because someone had told his father that Japanese forces had buried the bodies and the government had later moved them to an Alaskan cemetery.
Red Hall, who now lives in McKinney, said his father had wanted to try to bring his brother's remains home to Mission, but he talked him out of it.
"It wouldn't help, and you didn't always know what you were getting," Red Hall said in Monday's edition of the newspaper.
Red Hall said he would like his brother to be buried in a government cemetery with his crewmates.
Feb. 21, 2005
Texans killed in the Iraq war in February
At least four Texas service members have died in Iraq in February and at least 141 have died since the war began March 20, 2003, according to the U.S. Department of Defense. ( www.defenselink.mil ) The total includes overseas casualties related to Operation Iraqi Freedom, both in combat and otherwise, as reported by the Department of Defense. Here's a brief look at those who have died this month:
_ Feb. 19: Army Spc. Clinton R. Gertson, 26, of Houston, died in Mosul from small-arms fire. Gertson was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment at Fort Lewis, Wash.
_ Feb. 13: Air Force Staff Sgt. Ray Rangel, 29, of San Antonio, died during an effort to rescue soldiers from a Humvee that rolled into a canal near Balad while on combat patrol. Rangel was assigned to the 7th Civil Engineer Squadron, Dyess Air Force Base, Texas.
_ Feb. 6: Army Spc. Jeremy Allmon, 22, of Cleburne, was killed when a roadside bomb detonated near his vehicle in Taji, north of Baghdad. Allmon was assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood.
_ Feb. 4: Army Sgt. Daniel Torres, 23, of Fort Worth, was killed when a roadside bomb hit his vehicle in Beiji. He was assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.
Feb. 20, 2005
Navy honors sailor who performed lifesaving surgery aboard submarine in World War II
RALEIGH, N.C. - The Navy on Sunday honored a former pharmacists' mate with a commendation medal, more than 60 years after he saved a young sailor's life by performing an emergency appendectomy aboard a submarine during World War II.
Wheeler Lipes performed the surgery in 1942, with his patient stretched out on a dining table as their submarine lay submerged 120 feet beneath the Pacific Ocean. A news report on Lipes' feat won a Pulitzer Prize, and the Navy later made a movie about it.
Lipes, 84, said past efforts to award him the Navy Commendation Medal failed because government officials believed a statute of limitations had passed.
"Personally, I'm not overwhelmed with awards, but I think it was important they present the medal because it helps to bring about some closure of things that fall through the cracks," he said.
Lipes was 23 when he performed the surgery on sailor Darrel Dean Rector aboard the USS Seadragon.
Rector was too tall to lay on the table, so a nearby cabinet was opened and Lipes put the patient's feet in the drawer. The table was bolted to the floor, so Lipes had to stand with his knees bent throughout the operation.
He used makeshift instruments - bent spoons for retractors, alcohol from torpedoes for sterilization and hemostats for knife handles to hold the blades. Lipes and an assistant wore sterilized pajamas for operating room gowns.
After nearly two hours, Lipes removed a swollen 5-inch appendix that had several inches of blackened tissue.
Arthur Killam, 84, who served aboard the Seadragon with Lipes and attended Sunday's ceremony, said the young Lipes never wavered during the surgery.
"(Lipes) said he'd seen an appendectomy one time so he told the skipper that he could do it," said Killam, who lives in Roanoke, Va. "He went right after it."
Lipes said he wasn't the brave one.
"I always thought he was the guy who had the courage," Lipes said of Rector. "I've asked myself, 'Would I have gotten up on that table and let someone do the same thing to me?' He was one of the most courageous people I've ever met."
Rector was back on duty in 13 days. He died two years later aboard a different submarine, the USS Tang, when the Tang fired a torpedo that circled back and struck the vessel.
Reporter George Weller of the now-defunct Chicago Daily News wrote about Lipes' undersea surgery and won a Pulitzer Prize. Several motion pictures also portrayed the feat, including one titled "The Pharmacist's Mate," produced by the Navy.
Lipes said about 100 people attended Sunday's medal ceremony.
"It was spectacular," he said, describing the ceremony in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "The Navy certainly made up for the 63 years of delay in the medal."
Lipes received the award after Jan Herman, historian of the Navy Medical Department, began looking into his case.
"I found that he had never gotten any kind of recognition from the Navy," Herman told The Daily News of Jacksonville, N.C. Herman interviewed and videotaped Lipes several times for the Navy.
"He had been in the newspapers, and when the war wasn't going very well for us in the Pacific, here was this 23-year-old kid who did this great thing, saved a guy's life under these very harrowing circumstances," Herman said.
The surgery wasn't Lipes' only harrowing experience. He escaped death early in the war when the submarine USS Sealion was hit by two Japanese bombs. He still has scars from that attack.
Lipes, who is battling pancreatic cancer, retired to North Carolina in 2002 after a long career as a hospital administrator in Corpus Christi, Texas. He said he was cheered by Sunday's ceremony. "I certainly was privileged and honored to be the subject of that presentation," he said.
Feb. 21, 2005
U.S. Marines, Iraqi security forces launch offensive
Sunni Arabs meet as Shiites prepare for power
By Jamie Tarabay
The Associated Press
BAGHDAD, Iraq -- U.S. Marines broke down doors and raided houses Monday on the second day of an offensive aimed at cracking down on insurgent activity in several troubled cities west of Baghdad.
Shiites and their clergy-backed United Iraqi Alliance met Monday in Baghdad to renew discussions over who their prime ministerial candidate would be. But instead of narrowing the choices down, the field of potential candidates has grown to four, maybe even five, insiders said.
The two most prominent candidates have been former Pentagon favorite Ahmad Chalabi, a secular Shiite, and Ibrahim al-Jaafari, interim vice president. The race may get more complicated following reports the Shiite's initial pick for prime minister, Finance Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, who has close ties to Iran, could become a compromise candidate.
Six explosions boomed through the capital before midday. The cause of the blasts was not immediately known. Footage from Associated Press Television News showed U.S. troops treating an American soldier apparently injured in one of the blasts, which overturned a Humvee in the southern Doura neighborhood.
Militants announced the release of a pair of kidnapped Indonesian journalists missing since last week in a video delivered anonymously to Associated Press Television News. The Indonesian Foreign Ministry confirmed that the two had been freed.
In Ramadi, U.S. Marines fanned out across the city, setting up checkpoints, searching cars and sealing off sections of the city to prevent people from entering or leaving as they carried out raids. Soldiers began the operation on Sunday, slapping a nighttime curfew on the city.
Iraqi Maj. Abdul Karim al-Faraji said troops detained a prominent Sunni Muslim sheik, Mohammed Nasir Ali al-Ijbie, who heads the al-Bufaraj tribe, along with 12 of his relatives.
As the Shiite majority prepared to take control of the country's first freely elected government, tribal chiefs representing Sunni Arabs in six provinces issued a list of demands -- including participation in the government and the drafting of a new constitution -- after previously refusing to acknowledge the vote's legitimacy.
"We made a big mistake when we didn't vote," said Sheik Hathal Younis Yahiya, 49, a representative from northern Nineveh. "Our votes were very important."
He said threats from insurgents -- not sectarian differences -- kept most Sunnis from voting.
Sunnis make up 20 percent of Iraq's population of 26 million; Shiites make up 60 percent.
Gathering in a central Baghdad hotel on Sunday, about 70 tribal leaders from the provinces of Baghdad, Kirkuk, Salaheddin, Diyala, Anbar and Nineveh tried to devise a strategy for participation in a future government. There was an air of desperation in some quarters of the smoke-filled conference room.
"When we said that we are not going to take part, that didn't mean that we are not going to take part in the political process. We have to take part in the political process and draft the new constitution," said Adnan al-Duleimi, the head of Sunni Endowments in Baghdad.
Meanwhile, a powerful Sunni organization believed to have ties with the insurgents sought to condemn the weekend attacks largely aimed at Shiites that left nearly 100 Iraqis dead.
"We won't remain silent over those crimes which target the Iraqi people -- Sunnis or Shiites, Islamic or non-Islamic," Sheik Harith al-Dhari, of the Association of Muslim Scholars, told a news conference.
Iraqis, he said, should unite "against those who are trying to incite hatred between us."
They include Iraq's leading terror mastermind, the Jordanian-born Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. In a letter to Osama bin Laden found on a captured al Qaeda courier last year, al-Zarqawi proposed starting a civil war between Iraq's Sunni and Shiite Muslims.
Shiite politicians have promised not to allow Friday and Saturday's bloodshed to escalate into a civil war. A series of attacks, including eight suicide bombings, killed 91 people and injured dozens as Iraqi Shiites commemorated the seventh century death of a leader of their Muslim sect.
Just dropping by to offer my ongoing prayers of support to our wonderful military members.
Dear Heavenly Father, please bless our military members and their families for the selfless acts that they perform to ensure our freedom. Please wrap your arms of protection around those who are on active duty to keep them from harm's way. Enlighten all of us in the relative safety of the US to be appreciative of the service of our military members and to thank them openly for all that they do.
We ask these favors as your humble and contrite servants in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.
(((((HUGS)))))) to all at the Finest.
Good morning and afternoon to all the FInest on this Military Monday.
Thanks to The Mayor.
May the Good Lord bless and protect our troops and their steadfast Commander-In-Chief.
May take a minute to load but well worth it.
You're welcome. You must have DSL, that was quick. :)
Sometiems works fast, sometimes not.
Depends on net traffic between myself and the target file.
Hey. Where's that writer33 thread? That was the best thread ever. :) Hehe!
Thanks for the ping, Aquamrine.
It was good one. ;)
Yeah. Whomever did that one knows what they were doing. :) Hehe!
Thanks for the encouragement, I'm thinking about doing another one soon.