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Army chief says troops strained, calls pace 'unsustainable'
Gov Exec.com ^ | Dec 5, 2007 | National Journal's CongressDailyAM

Posted on 12/05/2007 6:49:41 AM PST by RDTF

The Army's top general Tuesday acknowledged that his soldiers and their families are "stretched" and "stressed" by six years of war and will need a steady commitment of increased funding to keep the Army from sliding into the "hollow" force of the 1970s.

Gen. George Casey said the fight between Congress and the White House over the supplemental funding for Iraq and Afghanistan makes his job more difficult and sends "a terrible signal" to the troops fighting the war.

In a presentation to the Brookings Institution, the Army chief of staff appeared to try to strike a balance by giving a candid description of the problems facing his service and what it needs to recover while denying the more dire warnings from some analysts and critics. But Casey emphasized that the strain on his troops and the wear and destruction of equipment from the current pace of deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan are "unsustainable."

Casey predicted a decision in three or four months on whether the Army troop level in Iraq could be reduced below the current 15 combat brigades.

Even if the commitment to Iraq is reduced and the Army can meet its goal of adding 74,000 soldiers, he said it would take three or four years of effort and increased funding to restore a force that is capable of meeting the full range of military challenges.

Noting the additional $17 billion in Army funding that Congress provided last year to improve readiness, Casey said: "Getting the resources to reset the force is the difference between a hollow force and a force that's ready to do the next thing."

Asked about the ongoing dispute between President Bush and the Democratic leaders in Congress over providing $196.4 billion in additional supplemental war funding, Casey stated the obvious that "not having predictable, timely funding makes it harder for me to do my job." And, he added, "What's going on now sends a terrible signal to my soldiers and their families."

Casey noted that thousands of soldiers are returning from 15-month combat tours while Pentagon officials are warning about ending services at their home bases to divert money from the normal budget to the war.

Bush issued another demand Tuesday that Congress approve the additional war supplemental without the timeline for removing U.S. combat forces from Iraq that Democratic leaders are demanding.

The general, responding to a question, acknowledged that the Army is granting nearly twice as many "moral" waivers for recruits as it did five years ago, but said 80 percent of those are for misdemeanor offenses. "The notion out there that we're enlisting felons is not true," he said.

Casey stressed the need to reduce the pace of deployments so his troops could remain home more than a year. With such a rapid turnaround between combat tours, the Army is unable to train for anything but the current counter insurgency operations, he said.

It would require at least 18 months between deployments for the Army to train a force able to handle "the full spectrum of combat," which would include a conventional conflict against a major adversary, Casey added.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 110th; afghanistan; casey; defensespending; gengeorgecasey; georgecasey; iraq; pelosi
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1 posted on 12/05/2007 6:49:43 AM PST by RDTF
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To: RDTF

nice to know that my service to this country in the ‘70’s is considered hollow.....


2 posted on 12/05/2007 6:54:26 AM PST by joe fonebone (When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout)
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To: joe fonebone
nice to know that my service to this country in the ‘70’s is considered hollow.....

I got out in '72 and y service wasn't hollow ... but the effectiveness of the military was in the process of being gutted by that time.

3 posted on 12/05/2007 7:00:36 AM PST by tx_eggman ("Believing without loving turns the best of creeds into a weapon of oppression" Eugene Peterson)
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To: RDTF

When an article has to resort to using a multitude of single word quotes, it is little more than poorly spun propaganda.


4 posted on 12/05/2007 7:01:32 AM PST by L98Fiero (A fool who'll waste his life, God rest his guts.)
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To: RDTF

We’re fighting the war with part of the enemy in front of us with mortars and the rest behind us with back-stabbing knives.


5 posted on 12/05/2007 7:02:11 AM PST by RoadTest ("It is time for thee, LORD, to work: for they have made void thy law. - Psalm 119:26)
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To: RDTF
Traitorous, seditionist, power-mad Socialists in DC- they should be charged with, not just treason, but HIGH treason...

We need to bombard their offices - ALL of them, particularly those running for office this go-round - each and every day.

Set up an email, a snail mail, and a phone call for each and every morning - grab your coffee and DO IT each morning.

The only thing they care about is keeping their personal power = let’s let them know it can end. This is the small part we can do to support our troops, many of whom are under fire each and every day - let's remember that when we have our morning coffee. They need to know that WE THE PEOPLE are behind them... We MUST NOT let these traitors pull off another Vietnam

6 posted on 12/05/2007 7:02:29 AM PST by maine-iac7 (",,,but you can't fool all of the people all the time" LINCOLN)
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To: RDTF
You know, I'd be willing to bet that the General's point was this:

Gen. George Casey said the fight between Congress and the White House over the supplemental funding for Iraq and Afghanistan makes his job more difficult and sends "a terrible signal" to the troops fighting the war.

But the Enemedia decided to focus elsewhere, didn't they?

7 posted on 12/05/2007 7:04:03 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: RDTF

Memo to Gen. George Casey

Stop whining.


8 posted on 12/05/2007 7:05:41 AM PST by edcoil (Reality doesn't say much - doesn't need too)
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To: joe fonebone

Only by the enemedia and moonbats. Your service is appreciated by this grateful American. Thank you.


9 posted on 12/05/2007 7:05:44 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: maine-iac7

this was posted on the DOD website yesterday - 200K people in danger.

http://www.defenselink.mil/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=48313

Army Civilians Could Receive Furlough Notices by Christmas

-snip-

If funding continues to be delayed, it could affect as many as 200,000 civilian employees and contractors, DoD officials reported earlier.


10 posted on 12/05/2007 7:06:21 AM PST by RDTF ("Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear". Mark Twain)
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To: RoadTest
We’re fighting the war with part of the enemy in front of us with mortars and the rest behind us with back-stabbing knives.

Bump that.

11 posted on 12/05/2007 7:06:24 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: RDTF

A lot of this signal is generated by the games our federal legislators have been playing with the budget.

Cut backs have already been initiated in a lot of areas in an effort to stay enough ahead of the curve to be able to keep up decent training and war associated logistics flows.


12 posted on 12/05/2007 7:06:44 AM PST by Grimmy (equivocation is but the first step along the road to capitulation)
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To: edcoil

Honestly - I don’t think he was whining. I think the enemedia wants it to look like he was.


13 posted on 12/05/2007 7:07:03 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: tx_eggman

i was in under carter....gutted to the max


14 posted on 12/05/2007 7:10:18 AM PST by joe fonebone (When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout)
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To: StarCMC

Here’s the full transcript of his speech:


“There’s no question that the army is stretched as a result of more than six years of war. And as a result of that stretch, the force and particularly the families are stretched. And I wrestled very hard to find the right word to describe the condition of the army that was stretched and stressed. And the term I came up with was “out of balance.” That the army today is out of balance. We’re consumed by the demands of the current operations and as a result, we’re not able to do the things to prepare for the future and to sustain the all volunteer force. ...

“We’re deploying at unsustainable rates. Several months ago, we increased our deployment—“our boots on the ground time” we call it—to 15 months. We needed to do that to support the requirements of our commanders, to give our soldiers and families some predictability and mostly to ensure that the soldiers that were deploying had at least 12 months at home so that they could properly prepare to go. Now, we did that with the full understanding that it was temporary. We can’t sustain that, we have to come off of that and we’re working that very hard and I think you can understand that when we decide to come off it, we going to be darn sure that we don’t have to go back. And so I expect an announcement on that here in the next three or four months as we watch the situation there on the ground. ...

“We are entering a period here that I would call “persistent conflict.” It may not seem to you day-to-day but we are at war against a global extremist’s network that is out to attack and destroy our way of life. Read their writings. This is not a foe that’s going to quit and go home easily. They’re going to have to be defeated and it’s a long-term, ideological struggle. ...

“Competition for water, resources, food is going to increase the international friction. Estimates are that energy supplies are not going to equal demand even if you count in what people are trying to do in the interim to increase it or look for alternative sources. Climate change [and] natural disasters create friction, create tensions and population movements and pandemics. And the two that worry me the most: the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their use by terrorist organizations …people ask me what keeps me up at night that‘s what it is. ...

“My personal view is, in the near term, the likelihood of major state-on-state conflict is very low, that’s my personal view. But let’s talk a little bit about future conflict…think back to that definition of protracted conflict. We’re going to be dealing with, I think, more non-state and individual actors than we are with state actors. That creates a degree of complexity all itself. They’re not deterrable. And, if you figured out a way to deter a non-state actor that doesn’t have anything to hold hostage, I’m happy to listen to you. They don’t operate by the laws of war, they don’t operate by international conventions. It makes our job combating that much, much more difficult.”



15 posted on 12/05/2007 7:14:18 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: StarCMC
Video here: Click link
16 posted on 12/05/2007 7:14:56 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: edcoil

Whining? WHINING? Since when is telling the truth whining?

Now when Reid and Pelosi trot this out to spin against the administration, THAT will be whining.

TC


17 posted on 12/05/2007 7:17:19 AM PST by Pentagon Leatherneck
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To: RDTF

The liberal news media must be freaking out at the prospect of the war being over in Iraq to run these sorts of articles...


18 posted on 12/05/2007 7:26:19 AM PST by Southack (Media Bias means that Castro won't be punished for Cuban war crimes against Black Angolans in Africa)
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To: RDTF
Our son, USMC, is currently in Ramadi. He says the Marines there want to get into Afghanistan because things are slow in Iraq.

Stessfull on the families, sure, stretched, sure, but the troops want to get this WOT over with. And they are willing to do whatever hard work is necessary.

They just need the funding.

[Mr] T

19 posted on 12/05/2007 7:28:16 AM PST by trooprally (Never Give Up - Never Give In - Remember Our Troops)
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To: joe fonebone

No one here considers it hollow.

Thank you for your service.


20 posted on 12/05/2007 7:29:04 AM PST by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: edcoil

I have NEVER liked casey.

LLS


21 posted on 12/05/2007 7:40:17 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (Support America, Kill terrorists, Destroy dims and vote Fred!)
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To: All; RDTF

.

MEL’s -PASSION- sparked by -WE WERE SOLDIERS-

http://www.Freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1085111/posts

http://www.Freerepublic.com/~aloharonnie/

http://www.Freerepublic.com/~anita1/

.


22 posted on 12/05/2007 7:52:20 AM PST by ALOHA RONNIE ("ALOHA RONNIE" Guyer/Veteran-"WE WERE SOLDIERS" Battle of IA DRANG-1965 http://www.lzxray.com)
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To: <1/1,000,000th%; joe fonebone
"No one here considers it hollow."

Well, "here" as in Free Republic. I'm sure a lot of folks on "Daily Kos" and "DU" consider it worse than hollow.

But then, they're treasonous scum.

23 posted on 12/05/2007 8:07:49 AM PST by Wonder Warthog (The Hog of Steel-NRA)
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To: edcoil
Memo to Gen. George Casey Stop whining

Your profile says:

"I am a southern California conservative.

Born and raised an Army brat, I did my tour of duty (1975-1980)"

Hmmm - seems to be a measurable difference between a 'southern California conservative" and northern Maine conservative...

Thank you for your service, but you seem to still be a 'brat' ;o)

24 posted on 12/05/2007 8:22:44 AM PST by maine-iac7 (",,,but you can't fool all of the people all the time" LINCOLN)
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To: trooprally
Our son, USMC, is currently in Ramadi. He says the Marines there want to get into Afghanistan because things are slow in Iraq.

Bless your son and the head of the Marines who want to redeploy some Marines to Afghanistan.

My grandson, 173rd Paratrooper, (son of a former Marine,) is in the deadliest area of Afghanistan, "Taliban Central" in the Korengal = over 500 firefights first 6 months, KIA/wounded rate 1 in 4! - they are in NEED of more boots on the ground...

It seems to be Casey who's balking on it - Territorial imperatives?

Time - PAST time = for the traitors in DC to fund our troops and time for Casey to put his ego in his back pocket.

Go Marines...

25 posted on 12/05/2007 8:31:30 AM PST by maine-iac7 (",,,but you can't fool all of the people all the time" LINCOLN)
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To: maine-iac7

Thank You and GO PARATROOPERS!!!

I hope your grandson knows and sees that he has supporters back home.

[Mr] T


26 posted on 12/05/2007 8:39:34 AM PST by trooprally (Never Give Up - Never Give In - Remember Our Troops)
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To: RDTF
The military needs (a) more funding, and (b) to better spend what it gets. Warfighting is expensive, especially the way we do it. For the level of performance we demand out of the military, we need to get realistic about what kind of price tag that carries per soldier and per theater, in terms of it being 2007, not 1967 or 1947. We've been kidding ourselves ever since 09/12/2001 about what this war on "terror" is really going to cost us.

Taking an axe to wasteful military spending would be great, but there's a huge amount of bureaucratic entrenchment that will fight to the absolute bitter end than let itself be reformed. There's a lot the system could do on the inside to rehabilitate itself, but pork, inertia, and territorialism are very hard to overcome.

Either way, it's the guy on the combat patrol who suffers if he can't get spare parts or adequate training. That should be our concern.

27 posted on 12/05/2007 8:45:07 AM PST by Steel Wolf ("There are moderate Muslims, but Islam itself is not moderate" Ibn Warraq)
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To: maine-iac7

During my tour in the 70’s I never recall any of my superior officers complaining and we, were treated like crap in the late 70’s for even being in the military.


28 posted on 12/05/2007 9:00:02 AM PST by edcoil (Reality doesn't say much - doesn't need too)
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To: joe fonebone

Don’t know what branch you were in Joe, but the army was messed up in the early to mid 70s. In Korea we had race riots, black NCOs assaulting white officers, etc. It was ridiculous.


29 posted on 12/05/2007 9:04:56 AM PST by Scotsman will be Free (11C - Indirect fire, infantry - High angle hell - We will bring you, FIRE)
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To: RDTF

Asked about the ongoing dispute between President Bush and the Democratic leaders in Congress over providing $196.4 billion in additional supplemental war funding, Casey stated the obvious that “not having predictable, timely funding makes it harder for me to do my job.” And, he added, “What’s going on now sends a terrible signal to my soldiers and their families.”

_______

Why isn’t this the topic of all the articles about this briefing? Hmmmm.....


30 posted on 12/05/2007 9:08:44 AM PST by rightinthemiddle (Without the Media, the Left and Islamofacists are Nothing.)
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To: RDTF

“...will need a steady commitment of increased funding...”

IMHO, Sorry to say that this sounds more like the Democrats (especially when talking about education) than it does about fixing the issues.


31 posted on 12/05/2007 9:09:22 AM PST by PurpleMan
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To: RDTF

fight between Congress and the White House over the supplemental funding for Iraq and Afghanistan makes his job more difficult and sends “a terrible signal” to the troops fighting the war.

Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.
Democrats are not loyal to the Troops fighting the war.


32 posted on 12/05/2007 9:17:55 AM PST by Son House ($$Proud Member of Vast Right Wing, Out To Lower Your Tax Rates For More Opportunities.$$)
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To: StarCMC

See, THAT’s a speech I can agree with. The article twisted it.

I agree with the poster who said to beware ANY article that employs a series of one-word quotes.

It means that the person speaking took great pains NOT to put the word being quoted anywhere near WORDS that would express what the article is saying.

Also beware of any article that uses multiple “...” marks, especially within a single quote. Generally people have a reason for using all of their words, and removing them changes the meaning.


33 posted on 12/05/2007 9:21:39 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT (The Swiss Ninja.)
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To: CharlesWayneCT; StarCMC

here is the actual author of the article:

Otto Kreisher


34 posted on 12/05/2007 9:26:52 AM PST by RDTF ("Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear". Mark Twain)
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To: trooprally

I can’t help but wonder about how they would view the stresses on the families during WWII? Some of those wives at home got a piece of mail once a month. We’re so spoiled.

Not only that, but I’d wager that the stress is compounded exponentially by the baloney that gets played out in the enemedia and by the Congress every day. Ugh!


35 posted on 12/05/2007 9:43:08 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: rightinthemiddle

EXACTLY! Media bias is ugly, isn’t it?


36 posted on 12/05/2007 9:45:38 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: RDTF
He's certainly been reporting in the defense arena for a long time.
37 posted on 12/05/2007 9:50:53 AM PST by StarCMC (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com; http://starcmc.wordpress.com/ - The Enemedia is inside the gates.)
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To: joe fonebone
nice to know that my service to this country in the ‘70’s is considered hollow.....

If you served in the '70s as I did, you'd know exactly what the General was talking about. Reagan was a breathe of fresh air when he came in and we started ramping up again. It was a damn good thing the Soviets never tried anything while Carter was in office.
38 posted on 12/05/2007 9:51:08 AM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: StarCMC
I can’t help but wonder about how they would view the stresses on the families during WWII? Some of those wives at home got a piece of mail once a month. We’re so spoiled.

Right after my daughter started flying into and out of Iraq (and Afghanistan as well), she sent me an email with a picture of part of her aircraft and said "See the bullet holes? Somebody took some potshots at us this morning. Don't tell mom."

I have friends who have children serving over there, and they'll be chatting with them (including video chatting) and they'll hear something and their kid will say "something happened, I've gotta run, see ya" as they are picking up a rifle.

The whole thing is very surreal at times (we should have had a clue when the White House allowed reporters to be "embedded" on a large scale during the invasion in 2003).
39 posted on 12/05/2007 9:57:28 AM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: af_vet_rr

like i said in another post, carter gutted the military...having to strip aircraft for spare parts was totally asinine...and no fuel to fly ‘em with.....or tools to fix ‘em with....yeah, i remember those days...


40 posted on 12/05/2007 9:57:59 AM PST by joe fonebone (When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout)
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To: af_vet_rr; joe fonebone
In the '70's we were underfunded, understaffed and our equipment was falling apart. The Carter military.

But we, perhaps foolishly, thought if we were called upon to fight the Sov's in Germany (the primary mission my unit trained for) we could get the job done.

41 posted on 12/05/2007 10:06:16 AM PST by colorado tanker
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To: RDTF

I like Gen Casey, I trust Gen Casey, I’m certain Gen Casey is right about the deployment and funding crisin that the army faces.

The right answer is more than just money and optempo, though:

1. First, the force is the wrong size and has been since it was cut from 18 divisions. If we currently had 18 divisions, that would spread the deployments out to once every 3 years. That would be more than sustainable.

2. The current length of deployment is 15 months for active duty. My son-in-law is on one of these deployments, and it isn’t necessary. A deployment need not be for more than 4 months if the Country felt like putting the money behind it. These guys are all so familiar with Iraq by now that they could swap out the people on the same weapons just by flying the personnel in and flying the departing out. They do it with SpecOps all the time.


42 posted on 12/05/2007 10:07:13 AM PST by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain! True Supporters of Our Troops Support the Necessity of their Sacrifice!)
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To: maine-iac7
It seems to be Casey who's balking on it - Territorial imperatives?

More like where does he get the troops from? The army is on a 15 months overseas and less than 12 months home rotation right now. The only way to staff the surge and find extra troops for Afganistan is to cut the at-home time even more.

43 posted on 12/05/2007 10:13:22 AM PST by Non-Sequitur (Save Fredericksburg. Support CVBT.)
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To: joe fonebone

Still and all - you’re appreciated! Thanks for serving our country.


44 posted on 12/05/2007 10:17:02 AM PST by fishergirl (My warrior, my soldier, my hero - my son. God bless our troops!)
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To: trooprally

God bless your son and prayers for his safety!


45 posted on 12/05/2007 10:17:40 AM PST by fishergirl (My warrior, my soldier, my hero - my son. God bless our troops!)
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To: joe fonebone

I thank you for your service and all soldiers who have and are sering. I am sick of seeing the soldiers from vietnam being treated like dirt it is long over do to you and others for a proper home coming. So I will say it again thank you


46 posted on 12/05/2007 10:26:30 AM PST by molette67
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To: Wonder Warthog; joe fonebone
Well, "here" as in Free Republic. I'm sure a lot of folks on "Daily Kos" and "DU" consider it worse than hollow.

Correct. I mean't "here" as in FR and the great majority of places in the US.

I don't consider "Daily Kos" and "DU" to be real since they are fact-free zones. They're more like comic book porn.

47 posted on 12/05/2007 10:45:14 AM PST by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: StarCMC
I’ve often wondered about the WWII Vets and their families. This is one reason they are called “The Greatest Generation”.

But every generation of Vets is “The Greatest” just for protecting the freedoms of us and ones they don’t even know, all over this World.

[Mr] T

48 posted on 12/05/2007 10:45:17 AM PST by trooprally (Never Give Up - Never Give In - Remember Our Troops)
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To: fishergirl

Thank You.

Thinking about it, two weeks from today, he’ll be home, just in time for Christmas.

[Mr] T


49 posted on 12/05/2007 10:47:42 AM PST by trooprally (Never Give Up - Never Give In - Remember Our Troops)
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To: xzins
Prayers that your son-in-law returns safely.

[Mr] T

50 posted on 12/05/2007 10:49:43 AM PST by trooprally (Never Give Up - Never Give In - Remember Our Troops)
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