STAND WITH CANADA

WE STAND WITH CANADA. The fight goes on. It knows no boundaries or borders. We’d best understand it and get ready for it here. Of particular note to this blog and much of its readership– the soldier who was on guard at the War Memorial and subsequently killed, was a reservist, a citizen-soldier. One of us. Here’s his regiment. I served in Kabul with several Canadians. Good men, all. They stood with us. We stand with them.

The Burden of War

Falleth not upon the Soldier, or Marine, or Sailor, or Airman.  But on the people who sent him to that beach without water.  Here‘s an interesting article by Sebastian Junger who has spent much of his journalistic career embedded among Soldiers to tell their story. The Soldier. . .is a tool.  When you hammer a nail as you build a bed frame, what take responsibility for it?  The hammer?  I would say no.  It must be the person hammering the nail.  To that effect, the Soldier is a tool, he should not bear the majority of the pain or blame […]

The Day Our World Stopped Turning

As the junior member of the group I haven’t really reflected on this today.  11 September 2001, I was in the seventh grade.  12 years old, mom almost kept us home, but the college decided they were going to push and she dropped us off at school.  I honestly don’t know if she got much work done that day. As much as my teachers may have wanted it to remain normal, they exacerbated the issue by not playing the news for us that day.  We’d all watched the beginning with the towers smoking, I didn’t see either collapse until that […]

Deserters: CPL Wassef Ali Hassoun surfaces.

Marine Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun, who has been declared a deserter on two separate occasions a decade ago, has turned himself in to U.S. custody and will face charges, the Marines confirmed. The 34-year-old arrived in Norfolk, Va., on Sunday and is scheduled to go Monday to Camp Lejeune, N.C., where his case will be adjudicated, according to a Marine spokesman. He had been in the Middle East, the spokesman said. I must say summer is a crazy time of year.  Bring one home and another wants to come back.  Should he be found guilty, he faces a maximum penalty […]

“Estonian Charity Shoot”

This is pretty effing cool. Every September, the Estonian contingent of ISAF (International Security Assistance Force) holds a charity shoot aboard Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan. Taking place every Sunday during September, this is the second annual Charity Shoot. The purpose is to raise funds for a charity organization that takes care of Estonian soldiers wounded in Afghanistan. Open to personal deployed to Camp Leatherneck (both military and civilian), the shoot is managed by experienced NCOs of the Estonian Scouts light armored Infantry Battalion. This unit is similar to a Marine Light Armored Reconnaissance (LAR) Battalion or an Army Stryker Brigade. They […]

Thanksgiving, 2013

To add to Brother Slater’s post below, here is something from a fellow who goes by “PsyOp Cop” (perhaps you’ve heard of him): As you sit down and enjoy your Thanksgiving, please keep in mind those who keep watch over you and your loved ones. Right now, sailors are standing watch on a frigate or destroyer, plowing the waters of the world’s oceans… or are underway several hundred feet beneath the sea. Right now, a pilot is flying combat air patrol over Afghanistan while soldiers or Marines below sit in a sandbag bunker of a lonely combat outpost, perhaps enjoying […]

Massive US Relief Effort Underway in Philippines

The Navy/Marine Corps team (among other elements of the US military, of course) is haze-gray and underway to the PI: The U.S. Marine commander on the ground in the Philippines called Tuesday for more ships, supplies and troops to cope with the vast devastation caused by super Typhoon Haiyan in what was shaping up as the biggest relief effort ever undertaken by the U.S. military in the Pacific. The aircraft carrier USS George Washington and its battle group were expected to arrive in Philippine waters Wednesday. However, Marine Brig. Gen. Paul Kennedy said his more immediate need was for amphibious […]

OPSEC Anyone?

So the SEALS conduct a raid into Somalia and Delta captures a bad guy in Libya. Can someone tell me why we know this and why more and more details are being discussed about these actions every day? And why has nothing been written about the action the 3d Ranger Battalion got into on Saturday night in which a number of Rangers were killed and wounded? As a Submariner, I learned early on that our strength lay in our silence. It is the Silent Service for a reason. If the bad guys know capabilities, operating patterns, limitations, etc., then they […]

Will Congress Restore the US President’s Credibility?

Walter Russell Mead asserts that if Congress does not back the POTUS in bombing Syria, this amounts to destruction of the credibility and power of the Office of the President on the world stage. “It is precisely the President’s credibility as a spokesman for the “international community” (whatever that is) and for US foreign policy that is glaringly and horribly on the line. An effective leader would have consulted with key people in Congress and made sure of his backing before making explicit threats of force. Now the President is twisting lonesomely in the wind, and the question is whether Congress will […]

Chris/Kris Beck ’88

Have you heard about the Navy SEAL who recently announced that he’d become a she? Not a joke, it’s true. I have to be honest, the first time I read about it I was somewhat repulsed. “That’s not something you see every day.” Then, this morning, a gent named Townie76 sent me an email asking if I’d seen the article. “Yes,” I said, but I hadn’t really paid it much heed. “Was he in your class? Do you remember him?” WHAT?? And I read on, and sure enough, there it was– Speckhard described Beck, who attended the Virginia Military Institute, […]