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Saturday, February 12, 2005

A Dime's Worth of My Two Cents

I haven’t spouted off in a little while, largely because there have been a few events in the last couple of weeks that have, quite frankly, left me speechless (My husband may be marking this date as an important event in marital history). I’ve recovered now...

The fact that the media, and some radical, nigh-Socialist Leftists have been eager to attack the President and our troops likely isn’t going to be a surprise to anyone who hasn’t been hiding under a rock for the last few years. But lately, there have been some lengths that this venom has gone to that have been just plain frightening.

First off, the kidnapping of “Special Ops Cody”
I’ll admit, when I first heard the rumor of an American soldier held hostage, my heart skipped a beat to leap into my throat. But I’ve learned not to trust anything from the MSM, so I looked up the info myself and found the picture. Give me a break. Most disturbing about all of this was the eagerness, the bloodlust, with which the story was reported at first. It was as if they were, horribly, hoping this was true. No one stops on the highway to watch a happy picnic, folks, but put a fifteen car pile up out there, and you’ve got rubberneckers for miles. A story about an American troop held hostage is a ratings windfall. The palpable disappointment with which they reported the fact that this “appeared” to be a doll turns my stomach.

And did anyone comment in the major media outlets about the fact that if the lunatics are putting up pictures of kidnapped dolls they’re getting desperate? That this is an indication of just how bad we’ve hurt them? Of course not.

Blogs that covered Cody’s harrowing ordeal:
And for a little humor
The Ripper
Tech Central Station

Next, Marine Madness and Radicals on Parade
OK, maybe it’s me, but Lt. General Mattis’ comments elicited a wry smile from me, not outrage. He’s a Marine, for Pete’s Sake, not President of the Hug-a-Terrorist Society! He’s not supposed to be sorry he does his job. He’s a decorated Marine General who’s served honorably for years, and if he doesn’t mind killing terrorists, that’s just fine with me.

Contrast this with Ward Churchill, who basically says that the victims of 9/11 got what they deserved. This is a guy who, according to The Rocky Mountain News ,
pals around with guys like Moammar Gadhafi. While bloggers and conservative talk show hosts are ripping him, all the left can cite is freedom of speech. Newsflash – freedom of speech guarantees that you will not be imprisoned for your beliefs. It doesn’t say that you won’t get well-deserved comeuppance. It also doesn’t guarantee you the right to work for a specific location. Nor does it give you the right to fraudulently gain advantage by claiming you’re Native American when you’re not.

Then again, maybe it’s not me, because a lot of other people are saying the same thing:

Check out both of these on any of a host of blogs, among them:
For Marine Madness:
Backcountry Conservative

For Radicals on Parade:
My View of the World

And finally, Eason Jordan
From (a post by LaShawn Barber)

CNN chief news executive Eason Jordan quit Friday amidst a furor over remarks he made in Switzerland last month about journalists killed by the U.S. military in Iraq.

Jordan said he was quitting to avoid CNN being “unfairly tarnished” by the controversy.

During a panel discussion at the World Economic Forum last month, Jordan said he believed that several journalists who were killed by coalition forces in Iraq had been targeted.

He quickly backed off the remarks, explaining that he meant to distinguish between journalists killed because they were in the wrong place where a bomb fell, for example, and those killed because they were shot at by American forces who mistook them for the enemy.

“I never meant to imply U.S. forces acted with ill intent when U.S. forces accidentally killed journalists, and I apologize to anyone who thought I said or believed otherwise,” Jordan said in a memo to fellow staff members at CNN.

Check it out at:
Prince Pundit
Michelle Malkin
Rebecca MacKinnon
Hugh Hewitt
The Truth Laid Bear.

That was pretty much the final straw of the last few weeks. Jordan finally resigned after his comments, but this should by no means be the end of this issue. He resigned citing that he didn’t want CNN to be “unfairly tarnished” by his remarks. That would be a neat trick. Unfairly tarnished? This is the sort of thing that can be expected from CNN and other media sources. It’s not going to tarnish them; it’s more or less just confirming their place on the map.

Eason initially stated that he believed that journalists had been targeted by our troops, then once he took heat, backed off and said that they weren’t so much targeted as they were mistaken for insurgents. Nice courage of your convictions there, Eason.

These stories merely illustrate a bitter reality; the Left owns the media, and the media at worst despises the troops. At best, they’re willing to lambaste them if the story sells. Integrity has been thrown in the can like a Styrofoam coffee cup (if we even use Styrofoam in Leftland).

Fox News and the bloggers were credited with blowing the lid off of the CBS scandal not too long ago, as well as a host of other bouts of madness in the past few years. Easongate is credited with prompting Jordan’s resignation. This is the job that mainstream media ought to be doing, but won’t. They are supposed to be objective, to report facts, stories of interest, to find the truth. That’s not what’s happening, and anyone who tells you it is, is delusional.

I don’t claim to be a journalist. I’m a blogger, and a baby blogger at that. I don’t try to be objective. I don’t have to be. I don’t post anti-war and anti-military stories, unless I’m reacting to them and hoping that other people will, too. There’s no point in my posting that stuff, anyway. That you can find on your own, in unfortunate abundance. How sad that it is much more difficult to find positive stories on our troops, with all of the wonderful things they’re doing.

There comes a time when this stuff crosses the line between nutty liberal rhetoric and becomes something far more sinister – providing aid and comfort to the enemy (John Kerry). Our troops are hearing these stories. I’ve personally read emails and letters from our troops stating that the media isn’t telling the truth, and that they’re worried about what we think of them. I tell them every time. Yes, there are negative stories in the media. But your country supports you, and you’ve got millions of adoring fans. We love you, we’re proud of you, and most of us recognize that jibberish for what it is.

But I don’t have an audience of millions of American Homes. I don’t have satellites to broadcast with. The media does. Ted Kennedy does. Ward Churchill is now smack dab in the middle of tons of press. And the old adage is, any publicity is good publicity.

But the tide is changing. The bloggers have made a huge step in that direction. CBS was forced to face the music on forged documents and a story timed to influence the election. The press was actually reporting stories to influence an election, folks – to hijack our government. That should leave you cold. Fortunately, the American people didn’t believe it.

It’s a sad day when we have more to fear from the enemy within than the enemies outside our borders.

"I hate newspapermen. They come into camp and pick up their camp rumors and print them as facts. I regard them as spies, which, in truth, they are. If I killed them all there would be news from Hell before breakfast."-- General William T. Sherman

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Defense Leaders on the Ground in Iraq

BRIEFING — U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld recieves a briefing from the Combined Military Advisory Training Team in Tadji, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005. Defense Dept. photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Cherie A. Thurlby

U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld meets with members of the Iraqi Special Police Commando unit in Baghdad, Iraq February 11, 2005. Defense Dept. photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Cherie A. Thurlby

U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld meets with members of the Iraqi Special Police Commando unit in Baghdad, Iraq February 11, 2005. These police commandos were injured in the line of duty. Defense Dept. photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Cherie A. Thurlby

U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld presents the Purple Heart Medal to U.S. Army Sgt. Sean Ferguson at the Combat Surgical Hospital in Mosul, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005. Defense Dept. photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Cherie A. Thurlby

U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld and Army Gen. John Abizaid, commander, U.S. Central Command, conduct a press conference at the American Embassy in Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005. Defense Dept. photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Cherie A. Thurlby

U.S. Army Gen. John Abizaid, commander, U.S. Central Command, speaks with soldiers of Battery B, 1st Battalion, 141st Field Artillery Regiment, in Baghdad, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005. Defense Dept. photo by John Valceanu

U.S. Army Gen. John Abizaid, commander, U.S. Central Command, signs a souvenir Iraqi flag for members of Battery B, 1st Battalion, 141st Field Artillery Regiment, in Baghdad, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005. Defense Dept. photo by John Valceanu


In Today's News - Saturday, February 12, 2005

Quote of the Day
"Those who sacrifice essential liberty for temporary safety are not deserving of either liberty or safety." -- Benjamin Franklin Associated Press
Car bomb kills 17 outside Iraqi hospital
A car bomb exploded in front of a hospital in a mostly Shiite town south of Baghdad on Saturday, killing 17 and wounding 21, police and hospital officials said, a day after 23 were killed in two attacks aimed at the Shiite community.

Rumsfeld calls for unity in war on terror
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld struck a conciliatory tone at a European security conference Saturday, saying the American-European alliance could withstand its current differences and calling for unified efforts to defeat terrorism and weapons proliferation.

Abbas to demand leaders uphold truce
Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas will meet with militant leaders Saturday night to push them to honor a days-old cease-fire marred by mortar and rocket attacks on Israeli targets, an aide said.

N. Korea's U.N. envoy says talks over
North Korea's deputy U.N. ambassador said there would be "no more" six-nation talks on the country's nuclear program and maintained the real issue is whether the United States intends to attack the reclusive communist nation.

San Diego Union-Tribune: In Iraq
Marines killed in Iraq copter crash honored
Four Marines who died in a helicopter crash that claimed 31 lives in Iraq – the single deadliest incident of the war – were honored yesterday at Miramar Marine Corps Air Station. San Diego Union-Tribune: In Iraq

Security units must shoulder their burden, Rumsfeld says
On a quick surprise tour of Iraq yesterday, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld inspected a wide array of the Iraqi security forces he said must assume the responsibility for the protection of their nation. San Diego Union-Tribune: In Iraq

The US News: Iraq News
Optimism on Iraq is up since election
WASHINGTON — Americans are feeling a bit more optimistic about the future of Iraq, a bright spot for the administration in an Associated Press poll that indicates many are souring on President Bu... [in Deseret News] The US News: Iraq News

Vehicle Accidents Kill 2 U.S. GIs in Iraq
The Marine, assigned to the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, died in an accident while conducting security operations in Anbar province west of Baghdad, the command said. Separately, a U.S. Army sold... [in Yahoo] The US News: Iraq News

Islamic parties performed well in Iraq's provincial races
BAGHDAD, Iraq — Islamic parties will be heavily represented on provincial councils across Iraq, according to final results released Friday from council races in 12 provinces that documented enthu... [in Deseret News] The US News: Iraq News

Rumsfeld Tours Iraq, Praises Iraqi Forces
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld hailed what he described as progress among Iraqi security forces after seeing some of them in action Friday, but said it was too soon to discuss when U.S. troops c... [in Yahoo] The US News: Iraq News

No exit for British in poor corner of Iraq
More Iraq coverage They sort out tribal rivalries, arrest car thieves, spot crooked contractors, hire men to clean sewers and restore order to gasoline lines. At the same time, they are trying to trai... [in MSNBC] The US News: Iraq News

Sectarian Violence Kills 23 in Iraq; Latest Election Results Show Big Shiite Wins
BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - A vegetable truck rigged with explosives blew up Friday outside a Shiite mosque northeast of Baghdad, and gunmen sprayed automatic fire into a bakery in a Shiite district of the c... [in Tampa Bay Online] The US News: Iraq News

Two Iraqi civilians killed in northern Iraq
The explosion of a roadside bomb near the northern city of Tall Afar killed two civilians and wounded three, it said in a statement, adding it had killed an insurent in an ensuing operation. [in Khaleej Times] The US News: Iraq News

US Hercules planes grounded
The RAF will not stop its Hercules C-130 planes flying despite America grounding its 30 oldest aircraft because of wing cracks, the Ministry of Defence has said. Ananova: War In Iraq

Iraqis out in force for local ballots
The fact that nearly 6 million Iraqis voted in two-thirds of the provinces suggests that around 8 million Iraqis may have voted in total, although it is [in] The US News: Iraq News
Iraqi refugee alleges mistreatment on visit to homeland
EVERETT, Wash. -- An Iraqi refugee who returned home to visit relatives says he was detained and severely mistreated by US soldiers for more than a week. [in Seattle Post Intelligencer] The US News: Iraq News

Defeat Iraq insurgency: Rumsfeld
Bundled up against the chill in a navy blue overcoat and green scarf, 72-year-old Rumsfeld flew into the northern city of Mosul before dawn. It was his eighth visit to Iraq and came just 12 days after... [in Khaleej Times] The US News: Iraq News

23 Die in Iraq Attacks on Bakery, Mosque
AP Photo WX110 By JASON KEYSER Associated Press Writer BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - A vegetable truck rigged with explosives blew up Friday outside a Shiite mosque northeast of Baghdad, and gunmen sprayed ... [in Guardian] The US News: Iraq News

Iraq Insurgents Continue Attacks As Election Results Tallied
BAGHDAD, Iraq -- There has been more violence in Iraq, as election officials prepared to announce the final results from the Jan. 30 elections.A police spokesman said at least 12 people were killed 45... [in The New Mexico Channel] The US News: Iraq News

Ananova: War In Iraq
Water cannon on G8 standby
Police could use water cannon against angry crowds during the G8 summit of world leaders at Gleneagles, it has emerged. Ananova: War In Iraq

Drugs stash probe on Navy warship
An investigation is under way after a suspected "stash of ecstasy pills" were found on board a Royal Navy warship, the Ministry of Defence confirmed. Ananova: War In Iraq

US Hercules planes grounded
The RAF will not stop its Hercules C-130 planes flying despite America grounding its 30 oldest aircraft because of wing cracks, the Ministry of Defence has said. Ananova: War In Iraq

Weather information from The Weather Channel

Al Azamiyah Al Basrah Al Hillah Al Karkh Al Kazimiyah Al Kut An Nasiriyah Baghdad Baqubah Mosul Najaf Nineveh Tall Kayf

Bost/Laskar Ghurian Herat Kabul Qandahar

From Fox News
Attacks Across Iraq
Car bomb explodes in front of hospital near Baghdad; 17 dead
Gunmen Assassinate Prominent Iraqi Judge
CNN's Chief News Exec Resigns Amid Furor
23 Die in Attacks on Bakery, Mosque in Iraq
Woman: Story on Dead GI a Hoax
AP: Video Shows Iraqi Executions
Over 50 Dead in Violence Across Iraq
Iraq Election Results to Be Delayed
Paper: Italian Journalist Alive
Wounded Soldiers Get Therapy on Slopes
Web Site: Italian Journalist Executed
Bomb Kills 21 at Iraq Recruiting Center
Diplomat: Egyptian Hostages Freed in Iraq
GI Demoted for Iraq Mud-Wrestling Party
Bomb Attacks Kill More Than 30 in Iraq
Extremists Hunt Barbers in Iraq
Rumsfeld Says Iraq Needs Time
Complaints of Vote Irregularities Emerge
Former Saddam General in Custody
Abbas to Confront Militant Leaders

From the Department of Defense
Defense Leaders Outline Progress in Iraq
BAGHDAD, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005 — Three senior U.S. defense leaders expressed optimism today about the situation in Iraq following the nation's first free elections and also about the progress made by Iraqi security forces. Story

Abizaid Underscores Importance of Mission
BAGHDAD, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005 — U.S. troops in Iraq are performing a vital mission in the interest of their country, and Americans back home are very proud of them, Army Gen. John Abizaid told soldiers of the 256th Brigade Combat team during a visit to their camp here today. Story

Visit Gives Rumsfeld Look at Iraqi Forces
BAGHDAD, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005 — Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told several hundred U.S. soldiers in Mosul today that he was "every bit as proud" to be there as he was during his pride-filled moments attending Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai's inauguration in December. Story

Marines, Iraqis Celebrate Improvement Project
AL MADINAH, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005 — Local residents and U.S. Marines from the 1st Marine Division of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force celebrated the completion of a village improvement project here with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Feb. 10. Story

Command Change Marks Year of Transition
WASHINGTON, Feb. 11, 2005 — Army Lt. Gen. Thomas Metz handed off command of Multinational Corps Iraq to Army Lt. Gen. John R. Vines during a Feb. 10 ceremony at Al-Faw Palace near Baghdad. Story

Operation Cracks Down on Illegal Weapons
WASHINGTON, Feb. 11, 2005 — Iraqi police and U.S. soldiers with Task Force 1-6 Field Artillery teamed up Feb. 8, knocking on the doors of 100 homes in Mufrek, Iraq, a suburb of Baqubah, to look for unregistered weapons and other illegal items as part of efforts to discourage enemy activity in the area. Story

Iraqi Police Commandos Get Connected
UNDISCLOSED LOCATION, Iraq, Feb. 11, 2005 — The Iraqi Police Commando Headquarters is now home to a nationwide command, control, communications, computer and intelligence operations center. Story

Troops Bring Donations to Uzbek School
KARSHI-KHANABAD AIR BASE, Uzbekistan, Feb. 11, 2005 — Visiting the nearby village of Khanabad Feb. 3, soldiers, airmen and contracted civilians stopped at the village to bring donations of school supplies to the town’s elementary school. Story

Engineers Help Expand Kandahar Airfield
KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan, Feb. 10, 2005 — U.S. soldiers from Company B, 204th Engineer Battalion, are putting the final touches on Kandahar Airfield’s Rotary Wing Expansion Project. Story

Soldiers Foil Hand Grenade Handoff to Child
Marine Expeditionary Unit Ends Ops in Iraq
Task Force Troops Help Rebuild Balad Schools
Soldiers Secure Iraqi Police Station
Predators Protect Troops in Iraq
Battalion's Heroism Honored

Team Helps Afghan Police Train for Future
Jalalabad Team Assesses Needs, Delivers Aid
Afghan Academy Welcomes First Cadets
'America’s Battalion' Takes Fight to Enemy

Airmen Drop Supplies to Troops in Afghan Mountains

Former NFL Star Glad to Serve Soldiers
FORT LEWIS, Wash., Feb. 11, 2005 — It’s been a quarter-century since he traded his No. 60 Oakland Raiders jersey for civilian clothes, but Otis Sistrunk looked comfortable as he sat at his desk in the stadium he manages on post. Story

NATO Allies to Join Training Mission
School Renovation Rekindles Hope
One Soldier Injured, One Dead
Advisers 'Embed' in Iraqi Units
Iraq Daily Update
Year in Review 2004 Fact Sheets (pdf)
Iraq Reconstruction
Weekly Progress Report (pdf)

Missing Aircraft Search Continues
Cache Found; Troops Help Injured
Drugs, Weapons Seized
Enduring Freedom Marks 3 Years
Afghanistan Daily Update

Officials Reject Abuse Allegations
Rumsfeld Discusses NATO Role
Waging and Winning the War on Terror
Terrorism Timeline
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Army Confident in Transformation
Air Force Looks Toward the Future
Navy Keeps Eye on Future Force
Marines Project Future Demands
National Guard, Reserve Update