Friday, March 31, 2006

Military Deaths in Iraq WAY Down in March

You haven't seen this on the TV news, nor in most of the MSM, but Coalition military deaths in Iraq dropped drastically in March. Total number of military personnel killed in March was 31 (29 American), down from 58 in February, 64 in January, and 68 in December. In fact, the number of troops killed this month is the second lowest number since the invasion began (23 were killed in February '04). The average number of troops killed per month over the last year was 62, so this month was half the average of the past year.

These numbers do not include Iraqi troops, who clearly are being killed in greater numbers as the number of American deaths drops. That may seem to some as a gruesome tradeoff, yet the goal of the U.S. all along has been to have the Iraqi's do the fighting

This could be a fluke, and the number will rise, or it could be the beginning of a trend. I'm hoping the latter is the case. As the Iraqi military takes control of certain violent sectors of their nation, the U.S. and other Coalition troops will move to the background. Operation Swarmer was a great example of this, as are operations in the Qaim area near the Syrian border.

This is Great news. It was reported earlier this month by USA today, and again today by NPR, but why isn't it being reported by every news outlet? I'll tell you why. The MSM has too much invested in their anti-war, anti-Bush agendas to publish good news that may end up pointing out that Bush was right after all.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Incoherent Leftist Propaganda

The Independent On Line ran this commentary today (it was listed as "News"). It claims to show how the U.S. military ran a propaganda campaign designed to put out news stories about the Iraq war that are more favorable to the Coalition, and how the positive claims made were false. The problem is that the commentary does not disprove a single one of the Military's claims, but does prove the anti-war bias of the leftist Main Stream Media. Heaven forbid that positive stories get reported.

Here is an example...........Supposedly the "pro military" press ran this headline on 26 October 2005....Iraqi army defeats terrorism. The story put forth by the Bush propagandist Lincoln Group went like this......."With the people's approval of the constitution, Iraq is well on its way to forming a permanent government. Meanwhile, the underhanded forces of al-Qa'ida remain bent on halting progress and inciting civil war. The honest citizens of Iraq, however, need not fear these criminals and terrorists. The brave warriors of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) are hard at work stopping al-Qa'ida's attacks before they occur.
On 24 October, soldiers near Taji received a report that terrorists were stockpiling dangerous weapons. The soldiers found over 150 tank and artillery rounds. These munitions are similar to the ones that al-Qa'ida bomb-makers often use to construct their deadly bombs. The troops destroyed every last round, ensuring they will never be used against the Iraqi people.
Three al-Qa'ida mercenaries in Baqubah were planning to conduct a suicide vest attack. Officers of the Iraqi Police Service (IPS) spotted them as they drove towards their target. But then something happened. The would-be murderer lost his faith and leapt from the moving vehicle. One of the other suicide bombers panicked and detonated his vest while still inside the car, instantly killing himself and another accomplice."

Did you pay attention to the facts......dates, places, very specific incidents?

The Independent then claims this as "The reality check"......
"At least five Iraqis killed by suicide bomber on bus in Baqubah, north-east of Baghdad. Bodies of nine Iraqi border guards, who were shot dead, found previous day. Joint US-Iraqi convoy targeted by car bomb in al-Ma'mun area of Baghdad."

Is there a single fact in the Independent's claim that refutes anything stated in the "pro-military" report? What date did this "bus" bomber event occur? Does the "fact" that one suicide bombing occurred mean that others were not prevented? But the last sentence actually corroborates the "pro-military" version......."Joint US-Iraqi convoy targeted by car bomb......". Exactly...........targeted, but unsuccessful.

The MSM is running out of negative facts to report about this war, so they are making things up.

By the way...........The number of U.S. military personnel killed in action in Iraq has dropped DRASTICALLY. Has anyone seen or heard that reported anywhere?

Senior Ditch Day?

High School students around San Diego County have been cutting classes to "protest" against proposed immigration reforms being debated in the U.S. Senate, such reforms having already been passed by the House of Representatives.

A news report came out a few minutes ago claiming that "Students went from one school to another trying to get others to join them". A "Principal" was interviews and made the statement that "We want our students to take an active role in debating issues........". Oh Really? I think not.

Isn't this called "Ditching" school, and aren't these students really just having a fun time cutting classes? Does it make one bit of difference to us what students think about immigration policies? If your answer is yes, then why don't we let them vote before they are 18? What age is the cutoff for "having a voice" in policy making.....17, or 15, how about 12, or 10?

This is a perfect example of what's gone wrong in America. Freedom is taken for granted and responsibility is becoming non-existent.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Postcard from the Front

We received a Postcard from Lcpl Tyler today. It was postmarked on March 14, after he had been in his "Battle Position" for about a week. It's a plain brown cardboard postcard, which Tyler tore from the back of an MRE package. The military has incorporated postcards into MRE packages so deployed troops can mail home. Pretty cool

Here's what it said..........."Hey Mom & Dad, This is the first piece of paper I was able to come by, if you don't know it's the back of an MRE. I think I've been in ******** about a week now, but I loose track of time over here right away. Things in ******** are so much different than last time. It's pretty incredible, we go on patrol and all the people are friendly, they don't run or hid or spit like they did before. The living situation is quite different than before too. We're in what's called a "Battle Position" though I don't think there will be a lot of battling this time around. I haven't seen Camp ****** yet, so I don't know how different it is. I know the chow is better there. Cpl ***** said the day we showed they ate steak and eggs for breakfast. So far our chow is minimal at best. We get one hot a day, maybe. So far it hasn't shown up 3 or 4 days. I'll say more in a letter. I love you. Tyler

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

We were awakened by the phone ringing at 6:30 am Sunday. In hopes that it was Lcpl Tyler calling from Iraq, I jumped out of bed and answered. It was him, calling on a satellite phone at 5:30 pm Iraq time. He has been there about 2 weeks, and the last time we heard from him was a day or two after he got there and he did not sound well. Seems he had an upper respiratory infection and a bad case of jet lag, But this time he sounded great. We spoke for about 30 minutes, which was amazing as most phone calls are 10 minutes exactly because so many guys are waiting to use the phone. There was a lot of good news. He's well now, and has been made a Fire Team Leader. There is not much happening in terms of the insurgency, only a couple of IEDs which they found before they blew up, a very small weapons cache, and some "shots fired" which occasioned their squad to take a "Firm Position" in a building which had a locked metal door, which the Lcpl promptly blew apart with his shotgun (I just love that sort of thing). After his last deployment (9 marines were killed in action in the first month) we are very happy that things are calm. The people out near the Syrian border are living normal lives, free from terrorist threats and restrictions, and for the most part are cooperating with the marines. The children love the marines. The future of Iraq is being established in places like this by the US Marines.

Here is a link to a great article about the place Tyler is and what the Marines of 3/6 did to make it a better place for 1/7 and the Iraqis who live there.

The bad news in that living conditions are not so great. Camp ******, the Firm Base for 1/7 Baker company, is a fairly nice base, with many of the comforts of home. But most of the marines are not in Camp ******, but in "Battle Positions" in town. The Battle positions were set up after Operation Steel Curtain, and are there to establish the Iraqi Army as the dominant force. A platoon of marines lives with a platoon of Iraqi Army soldiers, and they do everything together. They have running water, which is hot when the town has power. They can send their laundry to the Firm Base by way of CAAT (can you imagine that.........Combined Anti Armor Teams........Humvees fitted with the deadliest of rockets, machine guns, grenade launchers, and marines.........being used as laundry delivery service?)

but it's uncertain as to whether you'll get your socks back or not.............Mom, Please send socks and underwear!" They are supposed to get one hot meal a day, also delivered by CAAT, but often they don't arrive, so it's MREs or care package dinners. The marines also have no access to computers, and very limited access to phones, making old fashioned mail the main source of communicating this deployment.

Then theres the ugly. The Lcpl said is growing a mustache. Imagine this mug with a thin red line under the nose and you'll see what I mean.

Actually, it might look pretty good

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Politics once again

Recently I have refrained from writing about politics because I have come to believe that Bush Hatred (otherwise known as Bush Derangement to Powerline) has made rational discussion of issues impossible, except amongst like minded persons. Leftists and leaders of the Democrat Party are incapable of recognizing or telling the truth, and frankly, reading their hate filled comments on my blog is a waste of my time.

But now I find myself feeling the need to vent about certain pathetic and wimpy Democrat politicians and the bogusness of their contentions. Senator Russ Feingold and the completely worthless Rep. John Conyers are respectively calling for Censure and Impeachment of President Bush for "spying" on Americans without court issued warrants. The only people in American who take them seriously are like minded Bush haters and the mainstream media pundits who desperately want to see Bush fail, even if it means losing a war and sliding into a deep economic recession. The silly rants of these two will get hours of airtime, while the strong case for warrantless eavesdropping will be ignored.

If these political hacks (wholly owned by unions and the ACLU/abortionist/environmentalwhacko special interests) were serious about their stated intentions they would offer up legislation stating clearly that "ALL surveillance of Americans must be authorized by court issued warrant". But they know that this would fail miserably as most Americans want terrorists, both American and foreign, to be eavesdropped on and their plans interrupted. Not to mention that any such legislation would be UNCONSTITUTIONAL, for the President, not the Congress, has both the RIGHT and the duty to take whatever measures necessary in times of war to defeat the enemy!

I remember when Jimmy Carter was elected President. Being a supporter of President Ford and voting in my first election I was energized with the idea of making a difference. The Democrat supporters in the union shop grocery store I worked in understood my support for Republican ideas and programs, but believed a union supporting and peace loving Carter would be better for America. We discussed such things seriously and rationally. After four years of the Carter Presidency most Democrats I knew would not vote for the man again, and supported Reagan. We discussed such things. After eight years of Reagan the hardcore leftists and Democrat leaders began re-writing recent history and claiming that the eight years of Reagan were the "worst years in American history", but not many people took them seriously.

Then a couple of Arkansas politicians became very active in shaping the future of the Democrat Party, guiding it toward the appearance of centrist policies while actually promoting leftist policies. Part of their program was to demonize Republicans at every opportunity (remember the words "Worst economy in 50 years"?...or the "feeding Grandma dogfood".....or my personal favorite "tax breaks for the rich"). In 1992 these two rode into their co-Presidency on promises of "Middle Class Tax Cuts" and "Health Care for One and All", but delivered neither (having majority of Democrats in both the Senate and House of Representatives).

In 1994 American rebuked the Clintons by electing a Republican Majority who promised with their Contract With America to bring 10 specific issues to the floor of the Congress within 100 days of their rule. They delivered on that promise and passed 9 out of 10 of those issues. Democrats did not care that this was what Americans wanted, and soon blamed every bad thing that happened, from the Oklahoma City bombing and the Balkan wars to the stock market collapse on the "Contract ON America".

By 2000 the Democrats were well on their way to political insanity, needing only a George W. Bush to lead them over the brink (thankfully GWB gladly obliged them). GWB is responsible for not being tough enough against terrorism (pre-9?11), and for being to tough against terrorists (abu-Gharaib....GITMO....wiretaps....Patriot Act)....the murder of 100,000 inocents in Iraq, trillions in National Debt, world hunger, global warming, worldwide suffering, destruction of the environment, all greed, all corruption, the "Tone" in Washington DC.......on and on. Democrat voters continue voting for people who make these claims. Those voters are condoning and agreeing with their leaders, leaving the rest of us shaking our heads in disbelief.

Democrat leaders have seemingly jumped wholeheartedly into an abyss from which there appears no way of returning. They have so polluted political discourse in America that it is no longer discourse, rather it is a boiling cauldron of political lies, swallowing up the tidbits of truth as salt in a pot of soup. Yet salt will flavor the soup won't it. So we, Republicans, those on the right, patriots who believe in traditional patriotism and traditional values, must continue to tell the truth until the cauldron is so salty as to be throw out and a new pot started

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Lcpl Tyler is back in Iraq

The 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment has returned to Iraq for their second deployment of OIF 2 (Operation Iraqi Freedom). They will be deployed in the al Anbar province, and once they are safely at their new location I will post about the place they are at.

Clyrinda (my Dove) and I went up to 29 Palms Saturday morning to spend two days with Lcpl Tyler before he deployed. Saturday night we and another couple of marine parents, the Lemans, took 10 marines and two marine wives out for a big dinner. What a joy it was to see these fine young men and their wives enjoying life and each other.

Most of Sunday was spent on base watching them organize their gear for the trip.

However there was alot of time to visit and take photos between their packing, unpacking, marking, inspecting, and whatnot.

You have heard that marines are to "improvise", and "make do", well there was alot of that going on.

It was fun to watch the marines walk up to the Armory and return with their weapons, knowing they'll be holding them for the next seven months.

In the end their gear was ready to go and they were turned loose for "On Base Liberty", and told to return to the staging area at 0700 hours, with hair cut and "No cellphones".

On Monday morning we showed up at 0700 hours and found the busses already there and marines mingling with their loved ones.

We were allowed to mingle with them for about 2 hours, until a burly looking marine yelled "Say your goodbyes.........NOW!", at which time we literally said our goodbyes and the marines loaded onto the busses.

For the most part their spirits were high, though some seemed like lost puppy dogs being tormented by mean boys. Every marine we spoke to wanted to go, to finish the job, to help Iraq and the U.S. of A.

America's finest were not the atheletes at the Olympics, nor the students in the Universities, nor the young adults working hard to support families. America's finest were at 29 Palms that day, saying their goodbyes and climbing on the busses, rifles in hand, where they will stay for the next 7 months.