VA purging Vets from healthcare

Two stories from about the VA’s new initiatives in healthcare. Scott Davis, a program specialist at the VA enrollment center in Atlanta, says 34,000 veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan lost their eligibility for healthcare after the VA sat on their applications until they expired. The applications were designated as pending because they lacked income information. However, combat veterans are not required to verify their income when applying for VA benefits. Keep in mind the massive infusions of taxpayer cash into the VA. Where did the money go? A GS-05, on orders from much senior people, set aside applications […]

Letters of Marque and Reprisal

Slater’s excellent post produced very thoughtful, spot-on observations from regular commentators John Minehan and Mike_B as well as our resident Townie. The takeaway from the comments is that Americans have divorced themselves from service, including warfare. Recently, Bill O’Reilly recommended a much-derided solution to the problems of sending Americans overseas at exorbitant costs in blood and treasure. O’Reilly recommended that the US raise a mercenary army to fight terrorism. To authorize such a force, our Congress must issue a letter, or letters of Marque & Reprisal. LETTER OF MARQUE AND REPRISAL, War. A commission granted by the government to a private individual, […]

Another Chapter in The Longest War

October 11, 1784: Moroccan pirates seize the US-flagged merchant ship Betsey. July 25, 1785: Algerian pirates seize the first of two US-flagged merchantmen. The First Barbary War: 1801-1805. The US and Swedish navies defeat the navy and privateers of Pasha of Tripoli, an Ottoman governor of the region known as the Vilayet of Tripolitania. Of note is the invasion of enemy territory by Lieutenant Presley O’Bannon and 8 US Marines, along with 500 mercenaries, ending in the battle for and capture of the Tripolitan city of Derna. The Second Barbary War: 1815. While the US was engaged with war with […]

S/V QUEST Piracy Ends Badly

So, for whatever reason, the pirates aboard the QUEST decided to shoot an RPG at the STERETT and then kill the four Americans who they were holding hostage.  Thirteen pirates are in custody, while two decided to resist and were killed, one with a handgun and the other in “…a close combat knife fight.”  I don’t think this event is going to deter anything like this from happening again. I do think there is one thing that would, but I don’t think anyone has the will to execute the remaining pirates today…

Somewhere, Presley O'Bannon is Smiling

Courtesy of MDL, we have THIS: “U.S. forces board pirate-captured vessel, seize control “(CNN) — U.S. Marines boarded and seized control Thursday of a German-owned vessel that pirates had captured the day before off the coast of Somalia, the U.S. Fifth Fleet said. “It’s the first time U.S. military forces off Somalia have staged an action to board a commercial vessel in which pirates were on board with hostages, said a U.S. Navy spokesman, who was not authorized to speak publicly but had direct knowledge of the incident. “The action came about because the highly specialized Marine raiding force — […]

Monday Miscellany, 24 May 2010

In the WaPo: Fred Hiatt notices the deafening silence on Iraq and Afghanistan amongst our elected leaders officials. Also in our sometimes curious local paper: Navies Ask, Now What?? I’ll tell you– KA-BLAM! (splash) On the gun front, has anyone ever shot any Blue Star Ammo? If so, how’d it do? Also on the gun front, we have rediscovered the rare combination of utility and pleasure, in Virginia Gun Trader. How was everyone’s weekend?

"The Only One We've Got"

‘It is simply illogical to treat them as domestic criminals or to try them in national courts: They should be considered a special category of international terrorist, not as domestic criminals. On the other hand, there are no international courts or international prisons equipped to cope with them: Last month the U.N. Security Council called upon the secretary general to look into the idea of creating some, but of course any U.N. system would take months or years to come into being. “In the meantime, we have a few other options. We can take the Somali pirates more seriously as […]

Stupid is as Stupid does

Drifter-5 wrote in with this: “Good to see the Navy getting back to their roots. “And what kind of retards attack a Navy frigate?!? Hopefully they are all as stupid.” ANSWER: Khat-addled assholes, that’s who. And there’s no shortage of them. Dickheads. Belligerent fuckbags. The only thing missing from the story is the line, “After a brief judicial proceeding conducted by the frigate’s commanding officer, the five pirates were executed and their bodies dumped into the ocean.” See how easy it would be to stop piracy? We could start by killing the pirates…

Breaking News: Jews on Cruise Defuse Pirates' Ruse!

Great news off the Horn of Africa: ROME — An Italian cruise ship with 1,500 people on board fended off a pirate attack far off the coast of Somalia when its Israeli private security forces exchanged fire with the bandits and drove them away, the commander said Sunday. Cmdr. Ciro Pinto told Italian state radio that six men in a small white speed boat approached the Msc Melody and opened fire Saturday night, but retreated after the Israeli security officers aboard the cruise ship returned fire. I like the way they roll! Looks like one cruise line isn’t shy of […]

"Let Them Experience a Pirate Attack…"

Excellent online discussion today with one of the crewmen from the Maersk Alabama. This guy has his head one hundred percent in the game. Not someone to be trifled with. One point is crystal clear, for applies equally to citizens as well as merchant crews– gun control doesn’t work.