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Articles Posted by Axhandle

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  • Scott Ritter and Al-Zarqawi (Vanity/Request)

    10/28/2006 3:33:27 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 14 replies · 778+ views
    N/A ^ | 28 Oct 2006 | Me
    I recall reading a couple years ago some hit piece by Scott Ritter against the Bush Administration. The gist of it was that Zarqawi was an imagined and perhaps invented threat, that he was likely already dead, and that the Bush administration needed a nemesis around which to rally US support in Iraq, so Zarqawi was over-hyped. Does anyone have, or know of, a link to such an article? I have been googling for a while (that is a verb now, right?) and found nothing.
  • Eight fallen soldiers from Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast

    10/28/2006 12:29:52 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 2 replies · 298+ views ^ | July 04, 2006 | N/A
    Army Spec. David J. Brangman, 20, Lake Worth. Killed Feb. 13, 2005. He died in Uvanni, Iraq, when a mortar round struck his vehicle. Shaken by the Sept. 11 attacks, he entered the Army one month before the invasion of Iraq. "He wanted to do something for his country," his mother said. "And that's what he did." When Brangman called his mother from Fort Stewart, Ga., to tell her that he was leaving for Iraq, he said: "Always remember that I love you, mom, and my sister, too. If anything happens to me, I want you to know that I...
  • The Exceptional Nation

    10/22/2006 4:17:26 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 5 replies · 610+ views
    TCS Daily ^ | 20 Oct 2006 | Austin Bay
    If demography is destiny, then news of America's decline is (like Mark Twain's death) decidedly premature. Statisticians tell us Oct. 17 (at 7:46 a.m. EDT, according to the Census Bureau's estimate) was the day America's population reached, then surpassed, 300 million people. That's a three followed by eight zeroes. Unfortunately, Oct. 17 was Halloween with an extra "Boo" (B with two zeroes) for various "greens" and ecological radicals mired in Malthusian desperation and myths of looming disaster. For decades, the doomsayers have been predicting catastrophe wrought by the "population explosion" and diminishing resources. Author and columnist Mark Steyn notes in...
  • The Problem with Fourth Generation Warfare

    10/21/2006 4:35:45 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 18 replies · 960+ views
    The Information Warfare Site ^ | 17 Feb 2005 | Antulio J. Echevarria II
    For theorists of Fourth Generation War (4GW), there’s both good news and bad news. The good news is that there is only one problem with the notion of 4GW. The bad news is that the theory itself is the problem. Like the fabled emperor who had no clothes, 4GW is bereft of any intellectual garments: the concept itself is fundamentally and hopelessly flawed. It is based on poor history and only obscures what other theorists and analysts have already clarified. Although the idea of 4GW emerged in the late 1980s, it has gained considerable popularity of late, particularly as a...
  • Isle Medic Honored Posthumously

    10/14/2006 2:15:57 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 4 replies · 457+ views
    Star Bulletin ^ | May 25, 2006 | Rod Thompson
    HILO » Army medic Ray Michael Fuhrmann II was calm under fire on the day that he and a unit of friendly Iraqi commandos ran into an ambush. Fuhrmann saved six Iraqi lives in the firefight that followed on March 22, 2005. For his bravery, Fuhrmann's father was presented with the Silver Star last night in a brief ceremony at Waiakea High School in Hilo. It is the third-highest military honor that the nation bestows on its military personnel. Spc. Fuhrmann could not receive it himself. He and three other soldiers were killed when a roadside bomb destroyed their vehicle...
  • Candidate Rides Elephant Across Rio Grande with Mariachi Band Playing (No Border Security)

    10/13/2006 5:41:29 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 13 replies · 1,677+ views
    MSNBC ^ | unknown | Rita Cosby
    See the upper left corner of the page for the video of congressional candidate Raj Peter Bhakta riding an elephant across the Rio Grande with a mariachi band playing in the background. They were unchallenged by the Border Patrol, as there were no Border Patrol agents in the vicinity. The stunt was to demonstrate the lack of security on our southern border.
  • Longest Running Flame Wars (Vanity)

    10/13/2006 1:22:07 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 46 replies · 799+ views
    N/A | 13 October 2006 | Axhandle
    I was just curious, what is the longest running flame war on Free Republic (or other message boards)? Please post your link with start and end dates (approximate, if necessary).
  • Thicker Than Water? Kin Religion and Conflict in the Balkans

    10/09/2006 8:11:50 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 2 replies · 412+ views
    Parameters ^ | Winter 1998 | P. H. Liotta and Anna Simons
    Listen then, to what you do not know. The three rivers of the ancient world of the dead--the Acheron, the Phlegethon, and the Cocytus--today belong to the underworlds of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity; their flow divides the three hells--Gehenna, Hades, and the icy hell of the Mohammedans--beneath the one-time Khazar lands. And there, at the junction of these three borders, are confronted the three worlds of the dead: Satan's fiery state with the nine circles of the Christian Hades, with Lucifer's throne . . . the Moslem underworld . . . kingdom of icy torment; and Geburah's territory, to...
  • Why We Will Never See Democracy in the Middle East

    10/08/2006 7:11:46 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 94 replies · 2,703+ views
    ABC News ^ | September 11, 2006 | Steven Pressfield
    September 11, 2006— In the five years since 9/11, much looking-back has been done. The problem is we haven't looked back far enough. To understand the nature of the enemy in the Middle East and to evaluate the prospects for democracy and peace, we need to extend our gaze not five years into the past, but five hundred and even five thousand. I've spent the last four years writing two books about Alexander the Great's campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, 331-327 B.C. What has struck me in the research is the dead-ringer parallels between that ancient East-West clash and the...
  • Winning the Peace: The Need for Full Spectrum Operations

    10/07/2006 1:25:47 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 6 replies · 505+ views
    Military Review ^ | August 2005 | MG Peter Chiarelli and MAJ Patrick Michaelis
    You [military professionals] must know something about strategy and tactics and logistics, but also economics and politics and diplomacy and history. You must know everything you can know about military power, and you must also understand the limits of military power. You must understand that few of the important problems of our time have, in the final analysis, been finally solved by military power alone.—John F. Kennedy1 FOR THE LAST 3 decades serving as an Army officer, the traditional military training model prepared me to win our Nation’s wars on the plains of Europe, or the deserts of the Middle...
  • Toward a Neo-Reaganite Foreign Policy

    09/05/2006 11:34:44 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 5 replies · 571+ views
    Carnegie Endowment for International Peace ^ | July/August 1996 | William Kristol and Robert Kagan
    THE TEPID CONSENSUS IN FOREIGN policy, conservatives are adrift. They disdain the Wilsonian multilateralism of the Clinton administration; they are tempted by, but so far have resisted, the neoisolationism of Patrick Buchanan; for now, they lean uncertainly on some version of the conservative "realism" of Henry Kissinger and his disciples. Thus, in this year's election campaign, they speak vaguely of replacing Clinton's vacillation with a steady, "adult" foreign policy under Robert Dole. But Clinton has not vacillated that much recently, and Dole was reduced a few weeks ago to asserting, in what was heralded as a major address, that there...
  • Elites and the military

    09/05/2006 4:18:22 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 56 replies · 1,170+ views
    The Washington Times ^ | September 5, 2006 | Brendan Conway
    It's old news that military service has all but disappeared among the upper classes. That's why no one is surprised to hear that Harvard -- which still bans ROTC -- graduated all of nine ROTC cadets this year (MIT hosts them down the river). Not everyone suffers from outrage fatigue, though -- certainly not Kathy Roth-Douquet and Frank Schaeffer. The authors of "AWOL: The Unexcused Absence of America's Upper Classes from the Military -- and How It Hurts Our Country" are appalled at their peers' lack of knowledge, even rudimentary knowledge, of the military. Mrs. Roth-Douquet, a former Clinton Pentagon...
  • Jackson to demand proof that soldiers are alive

    09/04/2006 9:34:33 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 14 replies · 491+ views
    The Jerusalem Post ^ | September 4, 2006 | Staff
    US civil rights activist Reverend Jesse Jackson is set to meet senior Hizbullah officials in Beirut on Monday to demand proof that the two kidnapped IDF soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev are still alive. Israel Radio reported that information on the soldiers would assist advancing a prisoner swap deal with Israel, adding that the release of a video clip would be his preferred source of information. Jackson harshly criticized US President George Bush for refusing to talk to Syria or Hizbullah.
  • Extra 38 Diggers for Iraq taskforce

    09/04/2006 9:28:30 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 2 replies · 171+ views
    The Australian ^ | September 5, 2006 | Patrick Walters
    AUSTRALIA'S military taskforce in southern Iraq will be reinforced with an extra 38 soldiers and four Bushmaster armoured transport vehicles as troops undertake more hazardous, longer-range patrols in al-Muthanna province. The reinforcements bring the number of Australian troops serving in southern Iraq to more than 500, including 30 soldiers who are training the Iraqi army. Defence Minister Brendan Nelson said yesterday Australian troops would remain in Iraq for the long haul. In Baghdad last week, Dr Nelson met Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and pledged Australia's continued support for the Government. "He said to me, 'You were there with us...
  • Freep this MSN poll on War in Iraq

    08/31/2006 12:29:05 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 42 replies · 1,128+ views
    Poll asks, "Do you agree with President Bush when he likens the struggle against Islamic fundamentalism with the fight against Nazis and communists?" and then offers 3 packaged answers.Click here
  • The Saudis and containing Iran in Lebanon

    08/29/2006 3:00:26 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 4 replies · 381+ views
    The Daily Star ^ | 30 August 2005 | Nawaf Obaid
    With the Lebanon war apparently over, the world can turn its attention to managing the aftermath. And no country in the Middle East is in a better position than Saudi Arabia to play a key role in that effort. How so? The kingdom, with its relatively close relations with Tehran and growing regional authority, can do much to influence Iran, which has armed and funded Hizbullah for years. It will use its economic clout to help finance reconstruction and the international force sent to secure the Israeli-Lebanese border. However, Saudi Arabia can achieve none of these aims if the United...
  • Fishermen Rescued After Nine Months Adrift

    08/22/2006 4:07:41 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 32 replies · 1,081+ views
    UK Telegraph ^ | 22 August 2006 | N/A
    Three Mexican shark fishermen who spent nine months adrift at sea, surviving on raw fish and rain water, have finally reached dry land. They were plucked from the ocean by another fishing boat on Aug 9, but only this morning arrived at the nearest land - the remote Marshall Islands in the Pacific. There they were greeted by hordes of Mexican reporters. Salvador Ordonez, Jesus Vidana and Lucio Rendon are in good health, though their arms and legs are badly swollen from excessive exposure to sun and salt. Two of the boat party died and were thrown overboard during the...
  • The Education of Gesture

    07/26/2006 4:41:58 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 11 replies · 428+ views
    TCS Daily ^ | 25 October 2005 | Robert McHenry
    Cognitive scientists are generally agreed that one of the most important faculties of the human brain and its associated sensory apparatus is the ability to detect patterns. It is patterns that make the world intelligible, that carry meaning, that make it possible for the past to be a guide to the future. So primordial and so powerful is this faculty, however, that it brings with it also a large capacity for error, for imputing patterns where there are none, or at least none that are meaningful. It is with that in mind that I hesitate to claim that I have...
  • Stripper skips hearing over human hand, skulls

    07/26/2006 2:02:36 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 15 replies · 805+ views ^ | 26 July 2006 | Reuters
    Topless waitress refuses to say where she got hand nicknamed ‘Freddy’ NEW YORK - A stripper from New Jersey faced criminal charges Wednesday after police found a severed hand and six human skulls in her home. Linda Kay, 31, was due to be arraigned Wednesday for improper disposition of human remains. Police said she was arrested Friday. Officers responded to a report of a man wanting to kill himself with a hammer, but instead discovered a hand inside a jar filled with formaldehyde on a dresser in a bedroom. Six human skulls were found in an upstairs bedroom, South Plainfield...
  • Occupations, Cultures, and Leadership in the Army and Air Force

    07/15/2006 2:31:00 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 11 replies · 532+ views
    Parameters ^ | Winter 2005 | LTC/Dr. George R. Mastroianni
    From Parameters, Winter 2005-06, pp. 76-90. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Most discussions of culture in the military services concern the relationship between military and civilian culture. Comparatively less interest has been shown in the cultural differences among the military services themselves, although there is considerable informal and anecdotal (often humorous) discussion of such differences within the services. In his 1989 book, The Masks of War, Carl Builder focused on “personality” differences among the services, and discussed the implications of those differences for defense policy.1 C. Kenneth Allard offered an insightful look at service culture in his thorough analysis of the past and future...
  • Cop Out: Why Afghanistan Has No Police

    07/10/2006 11:55:14 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 14 replies · 886+ views
    American Enterprise Institute ^ | 10 July 2006 | Vance Serchuk
    When rioting suddenly broke out in Kabul in May, sparked by a fatal traffic accident involving the U.S. military, most in the city were taken by surprise. Less shocking, alas, was the response of the Afghan National Police, or ANP, to the unrest. Rather than dispersing the mobs and restoring order, Kabul's cops were reported fleeing their posts and, in some cases, joining the looters. "The reaction of our police was really shameful," acknowledged Jawed Ludin, chief of staff to President Hamid Karzai. Unfortunately, the sorry performance of the ANP was not an isolated event, but a reflection of a...
  • It's the Terrorism, Stupid

    06/30/2006 5:14:46 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 10 replies · 812+ views
    American Enterprise Institute ^ | June 30, 2006 | Michael A. Ledeen
    This in from al-Reuters: Iraqi and U.S. troops battled Shi’ite militiamen in a village northeast of Baghdad on Thursday...Iraqi security officials said IRANIAN FIGHTERS HAD BEEN CAPTURED IN THE FIGHTING (emphasis added)...The U.S. military had no immediate comment. In recent days there have been several stories further documenting the Iranian role in the terror war in Iraq, especially in the south, where Tehran has been working assiduously for several years to create a regional Islamic republic. So the al-Reuters report should not be a surprise. But it gives us the opportunity to reflect on three serious questions, none of which...
  • Batiste Needs a New Mirror

    05/29/2006 9:24:37 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 6 replies · 1,576+ views ^ | May 15, 2006 | Timothy Mathews
    Commanding the 1st Infantry Division in Iraq may have been the first endeavor that Major General John Batiste (U.S. Army, Retired) ever undertook in which he was not, in his mind, wildly successful. It seems that he does not know how to cope with this. Rather than looking in the mirror in search of someone to blame, General Batiste continues to make headlines by publicly calling for the resignation of Secretary Rumsfeld. Most recently his face graced the front page of The Wall Street Journal in an article titled The Two-Star Rebel. The article recounts the moral soul searching that...
  • Little Sophie critical in new crash tragedy

    05/07/2006 6:30:19 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 6 replies · 514+ views
    The Australian ^ | 06 May 2006 | D.D. McNicoll and Peter Kogoy
    SOPHIE Delezio, the brave little girl who survived horrific burns after being trapped under a car that crashed into her Sydney childcare centre two years ago, has again suffered serious injuries after being struck by a car on a pedestrian crossing near her home. Sophie, who suffered chest and leg injuries in the latest accident, was on life support last night in the Prince of Wales Children's Hospital at Randwick, in the city's east. She was in a critical but stable condition and doctors, who said her injuries were not as severe as first thought, expect her to pull through...
  • It's Not About the Latino Vote

    04/26/2006 7:49:00 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 77 replies · 1,310+ views
    American Enterprise Institute ^ | 26 April 2006 | Jose Enrique Idler
    The immigration rallies across America showed that restrictionists aren't the only ones with strong views. But beyond podium pounding, compelling arguments are also necessary. As the Senate goes back this week to the task of crafting an immigration bill, it is crucial to focus on the right reasons for creating a guest-worker program and legalizing 12 million illegal immigrants. The case for immigration doesn't have to do as much with the Latino vote or civil rights. It should center instead on America's growth, competitiveness and dynamism. This month's rallies of thousands of people in many major cities raised the importance...
  • Worth the Sacrifice

    03/16/2006 7:57:34 PM PST · by Axhandle · 13 replies · 600+ views
    Citizen Magazine ^ | March 2006 | Karl Zinmeister
    Why fight in Iraq? The answer is in the faces of Iraq’s children. By Karl Zinsmeister, reporting from Baghdad America is deep into the cynical stage when it comes to the Iraq war. We hear that it has been too costly in both money and lives. That they don’t appreciate us. That they don’t really want democracy. It is said they may not even deserve it. These reactions are not surprising—much good-intentioned effort has been thrown back in our faces in Iraq. One U.S. military commander I know paid a Baghdad contractor $6,000 a few months ago to clear and...
  • The Moses Complex

    02/28/2006 5:58:28 PM PST · by Axhandle · 3 replies · 243+ views
    TCS Daily ^ | 28 FEB 2006 | Arnold Kling
    For a worker to go home at the end of the day without a sufficient amount of money to live to the next day is, I think, a violation of Jewish law and government should be modeling that standard," [Rabbi Jack] Moline said in an interview last week, explaining why he backs the living wage campaign. -- Washington Jewish Week, February 2, 2006 Apparently, I am not a good Jew. I take the libertarian position that when a worker and an employer come to terms on a wage, then there is no need for government to interfere. Or perhaps I...
  • The American Social Model

    02/07/2006 8:09:36 PM PST · by Axhandle · 2 replies · 347+ views
    TCS Daily ^ | 07 FEB 2006 | Tim Worstall
    American capitalism really is a harsh taskmaster, isn't it? Those excessively long hours that everyone works, so different from the ease and leisure that applies in Europe along with our whiskey fountains, lakes of stew and the big rock candy mountain. That last being a product of a misdirected sugar beet subsidy of course. Indeed, there are those who insist that the US should regulate working hours, insist upon a reduction, as a way to bring some of this Euro-nirvana to the west coast of the Atlantic. There's only one small problem with this idea. It turns out not to...
  • Eurabian Fights

    11/07/2005 5:40:59 PM PST · by Axhandle · 8 replies · 699+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 07 November 2005 | Nidra Poller
    PARIS -- As the Eurabian Nights' dream starts exploding in the face of France, mainstream media are counting the number of torched cars and explaining that the rioters suffer from poverty and discrimination. It would seem that Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy ignited this unprecedented wave of violence by calling the rioters "la racaille" and promising to clean up the lost territories of the Republic. "Racaille" (pronounced rack-eye'-eh) is almost too good to translate. It means everything from bully to two-bit Mafioso, with connotations of thuggery, thievery, racketeering, and sleaze. La racaille is a gangsta class of knife-wielding bad guys who...
  • "Red Belt" Riots

    11/07/2005 2:48:38 AM PST · by Axhandle · 16 replies · 839+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 07 November 2005 | Stephen Schwartz
    In December 1979, at 31, I first went to Europe. I was then an anti-Stalinist, revolutionary communist. I flew to London and after a boat-train trip to Paris, was met by comrades in the small movement to which I belonged, centered in France and Spain. The young people who greeted me took me to an Arab café where elderly men sat on the floor at long tables, eating Moroccan couscous while smoking waterpipes and listening to North African music. My leftist associates included some who were Arab themselves. One, Saleh, was an Algerian immigrant who worked as a night watchman....
  • Soldiers Thwart Attack

    11/04/2005 8:11:31 PM PST · by Axhandle · 6 replies · 339+ views
    Black Anthem ^ | 04 November 2005 | 101st Airborne PAO
    Task Force Band of Brothers Soldiers stopped a gun battle between rival tribes in Samarra Thursday afternoon. Soldiers from the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, were manning an observation point in the city when they saw two gunmen open fire on a group of citizens. The Soldiers quickly engaged the gunmen, forcing them to leave the area. As the original gunmen fled, another hidden group opened fire on the Soldiers and then withdrew. Thirty minutes later, as the Soldiers were checking the home of the intended victim, five men arrived, including the original gunmen, and once again attacked...
  • 21st Century Bank Run: Watching a $4 billion company fall apart in a week

    10/23/2005 5:39:12 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 26 replies · 1,584+ views ^ | 17 October 2005 | Daniel Gross
    If you want to know what a modern bank run looks like, consider the case of the giant commodity trading firm Refco. It went public in mid-August, but in the course of the past week it has gone from $4 billion stock-market darling to carcass. The proximate cause of the meltdown was the surprise disclosure on Monday, Oct. 10, that an entity controlled by CEO Phillip Bennett had owed $430 million to the company. A week later, trading of the stock has been halted and vultures are picking over Refco the way hyenas gnaw on the remains of wildebeest. Refco...
  • Colonel's Toughest Duty

    10/20/2005 3:22:11 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 8 replies · 644+ views
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 14 October 2005 | Anna Badkhen
    Tikrit, Iraq -- Nebras Khalid Nasser understood this much: Insurgents often killed people in Beiji, a northern Iraqi town where he lived with his pregnant wife and their year-old son. He needed to move his family to Tikrit, a safer city about 40 miles to the south. He helped his wife, Zahoya, into his brother-in-law's beat-up Toyota sedan. They started driving south. They saw a U.S. military convoy. A shot rang out. Blood poured from Zahoya's head. Then she died. Standing on the blue concrete floor of his brother's compound Thursday, Nasser wiped his tears with the collar of his...
  • We Won... Again!

    10/16/2005 11:46:05 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 33 replies · 1,396+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 17 October 2005 | Stephen Schwartz
    We won again! For a second time, the Iraqi people proved the Western mainstream media, Islamist radicals, self-righteous and nihilistic war protestors, disaffected Democrats, and neo-isolationists wrong: the referendum on the new constitution was successful. The Sunni minority participated in the polling and those among them voting "no" were swamped by the positive outcome. Iraq will have its new constitution. The transforming intervention led by President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair will succeed. The global sweep of bourgeois revolution will continue, centering on Iraq's neighbors: monarchical Saudi Arabia, statist Syria, and theocratic Iran. But how long will...
  • Fissures Among the Fanatics

    10/15/2005 1:19:12 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 7 replies · 407+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 14 October 2005 | Austin Bay
    Perhaps senior Bush administration officials thought establishing a democratic Iraq would be quick work. In an essay I wrote for the Dec. 9, 2002, issue of The Weekly Standard, I described what I thought a very difficult path to peace: "Pity Gen. Tommy Franks or, for that matter, any American military commander tasked with overseeing a post-Saddam Baghdad. For in that amorphous, dicey phase the Pentagon calls 'war termination' ... U.S. and allied forces liberating Iraq will attempt -- more or less simultaneously -- to end combat operations, cork public passions, disarm Iraqi battalions, bury the dead, generate electricity, pump...
  • Brining Economic Stability to Iraq

    10/13/2005 12:13:23 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 2 replies · 271+ views
    Christian Broadcasting Network ^ | 12 October 2005 | Chuck Holton – TIKRIT, Iraq - Let's begin in Tikrit, the city best known as the birthplace of Saddam Hussein. We spent some time here on Forward Operating Base Danger, a sprawling compound of 68 palaces that Hussein built for his family. This island used to belong to Saddam's sons. But today, this area is a training center for new Iraqi security forces, which has graduated more than 1,500 new Iraqi soldiers and policemen. The palace is now the headquarters for the 42nd Infantry Brigade, which is comprised of 23,000 active duty, guard, and reserve soldiers from 29 states. Its commander,...
  • The Spirit of St Louis: Labor Rising in America

    10/01/2005 8:43:38 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 5 replies · 391+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 30 September 2005 | Bryan O'Keefe
    We can bring to birth a new world from the ashes of the old" -- "Solidarity Forever" Famous Union Song ST. LOUIS -- Anybody who thought that organized labor is dead in America should have attended this week's "Change to Win" inaugural convention in St. Louis. The one-day event marked the official launch of a new labor federation comprised primarily of unions that disaffiliated from the AFL-CIO over the past few months -- the Service Employees International Union, the Teamsters, United Food and Commercial Workers, and UNITE HERE. Also joining Change to Win were the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, which...
  • The War Against Radical Islam: A Clash of Good versus Evil

    09/30/2005 11:06:42 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 33 replies · 795+ views
    Airborne Hog Society ^ | 01 October 2005 | Pig Pen
    When discussing foreign relations, many cite Samuel Huntington’s well-known work The Clash of Civilizations and The Remaking of World Order. It began as an essay published in Foreign Affairs and the response to it was so dramatic that Huntington later dedicated an entire book to the topic, to discuss his view in greater detail. The essence of Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations hypothesis is that differences between civilizations, rather than ideological differences, will dictate future conflicts. This view, which resonated so dramatically with the most astute foreign policy thinkers of the early 1990s, has now slowly made its way into the...
  • Four Years After September 11th: The Media Failure

    09/28/2005 10:21:03 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 16 replies · 1,373+ views
    Tech Central Station ^ | 9/11/2005 | Stephen Schwartz
    We have reached the fourth anniversary of the terrible attacks of September 11, 2001. I am sorry to say that, in my view, the U.S. and Western media have completely failed to meet the challenge of reporting on Islam, in the four succeeding years since then, or in reaction to the atrocities that followed, including the extremist violence in Iraq, which I would not dignify with the titles "insurgency" or "resistance," the Madrid metro and London underground bombings, and the terror assaults in Indonesia, Morocco, Turkey, and elsewhere. On September 12, 2001, it was as if two civilizations, the Judeo-Christian...
  • The Future of Army Professionalism: A Need for Renewal and Redefinition

    09/21/2005 6:27:48 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 8 replies · 666+ views
    Parameters ^ | August 2000 | DON M. SNIDER and GAYLE L. WATKINS
    The Army that won the battles of the Gulf War in 1991 was one of the most professional ever fielded by America. As General Schwarzkopf commented, "We could have traded equipment with the Iraqis and still won."[1] And when that Army returned home, it was welcomed by a supportive, even adoring, public. Now, almost one decade later, the situation has changed dramatically. During the past nine years, the US Army has undergone radical changes--major force and budget reductions, revised modernization programs, and successive base realignments and closures. All were intended by design to adapt the institution to the post-Cold War...
  • Samarra: Hard lessons in counterinsurgency

    09/21/2005 12:37:17 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 9 replies · 417+ views
    World Peace Herald ^ | 19 SEP 05 | Pamela Hess
    TIKRIT, Iraq -- Samarra may be a cautionary tale for the counterinsurgent war in Iraq. "Samarra hasn't made the progress the rest of the area has made," said Maj. Gen. Joseph Taluto, commander of Task Force Liberty in central Iraq, in an interview last week with UPI in an opulent palace in Tikrit. The traditionally difficult town -- even Saddam Hussein built a highway bypass around it so he didn't have to go through the city on his way north -- Samarra remains a haven for organized crime, smuggling and fighters who attack American and Iraqi government forces. "Samarra is...
  • Soldier's reason for fighting in Iraq found in SoCal newspaper

    08/30/2005 2:31:07 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 7 replies · 627+ views
    Mercury News ^ | 28 AUG 05 | None
    WILDOMAR, Calif. - In a letter to a local newspaper, Army Sgt. Nathan Bouchard explained why he was fighting in Iraq. "You ask, 'Why, why are we in the Middle East? Why don't we leave Saddam alone? Why do we even get involved?' It is because somebody has to," read Bouchard's letter, which was published in April 2003 in the Riverside Press-Enterprise. "Problems do not go away just by closing your eyes or turning your back or burying your head in the sand," Bouchard said. "This freedom we have was not free." He was raised in Wildomar, about 80 miles...
  • Casualties on Rise for Ga.'s 3rd Infantry

    08/22/2005 3:56:43 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 23 replies · 525+ views ^ | 20 August 2005 | Russ Bynum
    FORT STEWART, Ga. -- Ray Gilstrap wiped away tears as he stood beside the tree planted in his nephew's honor, the latest in a living memorial to soldiers killed in Iraq that has more than doubled since the Army's 3rd Infantry Division began its second tour this year. "The numbers, compared to Vietnam, they're so small. You don't expect it," said Gilstrap, whose nephew, Sgt. Arthur R. McGill, was killed last month by an insurgent bomb while patrolling Baghdad. "Of course, we look at it differently now." Seven months after the Fort Stewart-based 3rd Infantry deployed, the death toll during...
  • Fallen GI Had Lifelong Ambition of Being Soldier

    07/28/2005 6:28:43 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 7 replies · 403+ views
    PORTAGE – A soldier from northwest Indiana who was killed in Iraq this week had planned on joining the military since he was a child. Army Spc. Adam J. Harting, 21, died Monday when an explosive detonated near an armored vehicle in Samarra, Iraq, the military said. He and his twin brother gave their father letters when they were young saying they wanted to become soldiers. “Little contracts that they both wrote,” said the soldier’s father, Jim Harting of Valparaiso. “He believed in what he was doing.” Harting grew up in Portage, graduating from Portage High School in 2002. He...
  • Doctors and Interrogators at Guantanamo Bay

    07/11/2005 11:56:27 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 39 replies · 1,061+ views
    The New England Journal of Medicine ^ | 7 July 2005 | M. Gregg Bloche, M.D., J.D., and Jonathan H. Marks, M.A., B.C.L.
    Mounting evidence from many sources, including Pentagon documents, indicates that military interrogators at Guantanamo Bay have used aggressive counter-resistance measures in systematic fashion to pressure detainees to cooperate. These measures have reportedly included sleep deprivation, prolonged isolation, painful body positions, feigned suffocation, and beatings. Other stress-inducing tactics have allegedly included sexual provocation and displays of contempt for Islamic symbols.1 The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and others charge that such tactics constitute cruel and inhuman treatment, even torture. To what extent did interrogators draw on detainees' health information in designing and pursuing such approaches? The Pentagon has persistently...
  • Rescuing the Law of War: A Way Forward in an Era of Global Terrorism

    07/04/2005 4:13:47 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 19 replies · 560+ views
    Parameters ^ | Summer 2005 | MICHAEL H. HOFFMAN
    Terrorists are gaining an astonishing legal edge over US and other armed forces deployed against them. The present trend promises to burden future generations, as well as our own, with an ad hoc, damaging legal framework sure to thwart counterterrorist operations and even furnish inducements for those tempted to join the terrorist ranks. The long-term import of recent trends can’t be overstated. The United States is surely—and not so slowly—bestowing legal status and privileges on members of terrorist organizations that have no precedent in the 3,500-year recorded history of warfare. Terrorists are acquiring legal recognition and support of a kind...
  • The New Neuromorality

    06/03/2005 4:17:02 AM PDT · by Axhandle · 9 replies · 359+ views
    American Enterprise Institute ^ | 01 June 2005 | N/A
    The link below has transcripts from each speaker at a recent American Enterprise Insitute panel discussion, as well as video of the event. Here is the description of subject matter discussed at the June 1st event: What do recent findings in neuroscience tell us about the ability of people to make moral judgments or reasoned decisions? Advances in neuroscience are being used by advocates to guide public policy on a broad range of moral and ethical issues. Is this new approach really a step forward? This year, the Supreme Court heard arguments about whether developments in neurology and our understanding...
  • The "Combat Action" Badge

    06/02/2005 2:00:14 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 4 replies · 2,646+ views
    Airborne Hog Society ^ | 31 May 2005 | AHS MilBlogger
    I read today that the Army is now going to hand out the new "Combat Action" Badge. It was designed similarly to the Combat Infantryman's Badge. The Combat Infantryman's Badge has a musket with a wreath around it. The Combat Action Badge has a similar wreath, but it has a bayonet and a hand grenade in place of the musket. The Army is apparently still trying to hammer out the exact criteria for the new badge. Here is my recommendation: nobody. This kind of reminds me of the Army's decision to make the black beret part of our uniform. It...
  • Walker's World: Neo-con wants more troops

    06/01/2005 11:29:26 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 11 replies · 410+ views
    World Peace Herald ^ | 31 May 2005 | Martin Walker
    What do you call a neo-conservative who has learned just how hard and costly and manpower-intensive the post-victory mission in Iraq has become? You call him a realist who has understood that the U.S. military is the wrong size and the wrong shape, and the $500 billion Pentagon budget too little to do the job. That is the position of Tom Donnelly, one of Washington's most prominent strategic thinkers and author of the new study: "The Military We Need: The Defense Requirements of the Bush Doctrine." Published this week by Donnelly's intellectual home, the American Enterprise Institute think tank, this...
  • Women in "Combat"

    05/29/2005 2:58:55 PM PDT · by Axhandle · 11 replies · 235+ views
    Airborne Hog Society ^ | 26 May 05 | AHS MilBlogger
    A recent bill that passed the House of Representatives and is en route to the Senate would forbid women from serving in combat support units below brigade level. Let me be the first to say that I have no idea what this means. My brigade has a forward support battalion. That battalion supports the brigade - is that considered "at" brigade level or "below" brigade level? Or is the forward support battalion considered "below" brigade level, by virtue of being a battalion? I have no idea. Unfortunately, it is very hard to tell what the facts are, because of 1)...