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Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Real Iraq News

By RALPH PETERS (Op-Ed, New York Post online)

August 23, 2005 -- WHAT was the big "Iraq" story in August? Which vital issue got the most air-time and ink? The camp-out of a sad, tormented woman who had lost her son, her marriage and her judgment.

The media pounced on poor Cindy Sheehan in an anti-Bush, anti-war frenzy. The disappointment was obvious when she decided to go home.

What should have made headlines? It would've been nice to see more attention devoted to the complexity and importance of drafting a new constitution for Iraq. But my nomination for the "Greatest Story Never Told" is a quieter one: Locked in a difficult war, the U.S. Army is exceeding its re-enlistment and first-time enlistment goals. Has anybody mentioned that to you?

Remember last spring, when the Army's recruitment efforts fell short for a few months? The media's glee would have made you confuse the New York Times and Air America.

When the Army attempted to explain that enlistments are cyclical and numbers dip at certain times of the year, the media ignored it. All that mattered was the wonderful news that the Army couldn't find enough soldiers. We were warned, in oh-so-solemn tones, that our military was headed for a train wreck.

Now, as the fiscal year nears an end, the Army's numbers look great. Especially in combat units and Iraq, soldiers are re-enlisting at record levels. And you don't hear a whisper about it from the "mainstream media."

Read the rest at the NY Post Online - free registration required, but well worth it for the read.

Hat tip to Maryann

Osama's Newsletter

"it's not often I make a video address, but when I do, I'm trying to scare the f*** out of most of the world's population, okay? That means that while we're taping, please do not ride your scooter in the background or keep doing the 'Wassup' thing. Thanks."

Head on over to Castle Argghhh! for the rest...high humor quotient on this one.

A Hero Heals - Joey Bozik - Update 8/17/05

Joey's surgery was Monday, August 8th, 2005. It was a five hour surgery and he came through fine. He had two days of pain and vomiting from anesthesia but he is a fighter and is doing fine. Pray that the stump doesn't get infected because that would mean more surgery and shorter stump. I am home now as Jayme is with him and gives good care. Joey will have the other stump fixed soon. I'll let you know so you can keep up the prayers. Also, Joey is getting the Bronze Star but the date hasn't been set because of the surgeries.

The picture below is the Corpsman, Shaun Rilley, who saved Joey's live in Iraq (along with God). Shaun is now at Camp Lejune and I went to meet him on August 6th before leaving for DC. He told me the story of that night. He said that he also had been injured 4 days prior with shrapnel and wasn't to be on duty. However, he a two marines were guarding a bridge and saw the explosion below on the off ramp.

They walked 15 minutes to the site and didn't expect to find such a tragedy. He said Joey was hanging head first from the humvee and he and other soldiers removed him to the ground. Immediately, Shaun began cutting and removing Joey's clothes to assess the damage. He said only a tendon was holding the right leg and right arm.

The left foot had toes amputated and Joey was bleeding badly. Shaun immediately tourniquet the legs and arm and started an IV. Joey was in shock. A medovac helicopter was called and took Joey to Baghdad. Joey doesn't remember anything about the explosion. God placed Shaun on that bridge as Shaun was not suppose to be back to work from his injuries. Shaun is 23 yrs. old Navy corpsman from Albany, NY. He was an EMT prior to joining Navy 3 yrs. ago. The 118th MP Co. had a ceremony in Baghdad and awarded Shaun a bayonet and command coin for his service for saving Joey's life. If Shaun hadn't stopped the bleeding, Joey was have died in just a few minutes. It was a miracle and also a miracle that Shaun is at Camp Lejune, just 25 miles from where I live, so that I could meet him and ask questions and thank him. Again, thanks for your love and support. Keep praying.

Gail, Joey and Jayme

PATROL — An Iraqi Security Forces soldier hands out handbills during a patrol in Hit, Iraq, Aug. 6, 2005. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Ken Melton

In Today's News - Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Quote of the Day
The Soldier's Catechism
If it moves, salute it.
If it doesn't move, pick it up.
If you can't pick it up, paint it.
-- Anonymous.

News of Note
Attacks in Jordan

Missile Arrest in Jordan
Al-Qaida in Iraq: We fired Jordan rockets
Jordan says Syrian militants behind rocket attack

Gaza Withdrawal
Evacuation of Israeli settlements complete-police
Pockets of Resistance
Palestinians: Pullout Key to Future
Video: Protests in West Bank Settlement
Photo Essay: Soldiers Push Into West Bank
Palestinian: Withdrawal helps state plan
Gaza withdrawal highlights divisions
Palestinian groups jostle for Gaza control
Kidnapped journalist released in Gaza
Hamas details past attacks in Gaza Strip

Operation Iraqi Freedom
Kurdish returnees revive Iraqi village
Text of proposed Iraq constitution
Official denies Iraqi insurgency leaders are operating from Jordan

Operation Enduring Freedom
Army Wants Review of Tillman Investigation

Able Danger
Pentagon Can't Verify That Able Danger ID'd Atta

Homeland Security / War on Terror
London Cops Promise Shooting Report This Year
Libya says to be taken off U.S. terrorism list

Democrats Split Over Position on Iraq War

News of the Weird
Japanese house-sitter robot hits stores
Turkmen president bans lip synching

Fox News
Iraqis Hash Out Constitution
D.C. Radio Host Fired for Anti-Islam Remarks
Falling Short
Video: Army to Miss Recruiting Goals

Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on Iraq
Israel completes evacuation of settlers
Experts inspect Lebanese bomb site
Iraq oil exports resume at reduced rate
Egypt eyes possibility of Islamist party
Palestinian injured in West Bank town
Egypt detains Briton over manuscripts
Jewish family of 13 is last one in Gaza

Reuters: Top News
Europeans call off key nuclear talks with Iran
Iraq assembly gets charter draft, Sunnis irate
Atlanta Olympics bomber apologizes to victims
Iraq's Sunnis aim to defeat constitution in vote
U.S. says North Korea right to nuke power no deal-breaker
Bush: US must finish job in Iraq to honor the fallen Associated Press
Israel completes evacuation of settlers
Bush defending his Iraq war policy

Yahoo! News: War with Iraq
Sunnis' best friend in Iraq negotiations? The US
Two US troops killed in Iraq
Rebels kill five in Iraq, minister escapes attack
Iraq's Assembly Is Given Charter, Still Unfinished
Iraq PM 'confident of agreement'

CENTCOM: News Release

Department of Defense
Homeland Defense Exercise Wraps Up — Story
U.S. Seeks 'Total Victory' Over Terrorists — Story Remarks
Iraqis to Take 3 More Days to Resolve Issues — Story
Iraqi Plan to Aid Saddam’s Victims’ Families

U.S. Troops Teach Iraqi Soldiers Medical Skills — Story
Test Pilots Troubleshoot Apache 'Symptoms' — Story
Sweetwater Canal Work to Benefit Basra Area — Story
Troops Help Iraqis Develop Local Government — Story
Bridge Provides Link to Kandahar, Future — Story

Marine Gunrunners Homeward Bound to North Carolina

Afghan Engineer District Hosts Contractor Open House

French Take Helm of Combined Task Force 150

Husband, Wife Blackhawk Pilots Serve in Iraq — Story

VA Supports 'Freedom Walk' — Story
Pro Wrestlers Support Troops
Event Honors WWII Veterans


Vehicle Rollover Kills 2 U.S. Troops
Roadside Bomb Kills Soldier
Officials Report on Successes
Iraq Reconstruction
Iraq Daily Update
Multinational Force Iraq
Iraq Progress Fact Sheet (pdf)
Weekly Progress Report (pdf)

Forces Secure Konar Province
Four U.S. Soldiers Killed
Academy Graduates Police Officers
Afghanistan Daily Update

Detainee Transfer Announced
Waging and Winning the War on Terror
Terrorism Timeline
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Bush Thanks Vets for Sacrifices
National Guard, Reserve Update

Officials Identify Army Casualties — Story

Today in History
- London establishes the first one-way streets.
1833 - Britain abolishes slavery in the colonies, freeing 700,000 slaves.
1864 - Fort Morgan (Mobile, AL) falls.
1866 - The Treaty of Prague ends the Austro-Prussian war.
1869 - The first carload of freight (boots & shoes) arrives in San Francisco, from Boston.
1872 - The first Japanese commercial ship carries tea to San Francisco.
1889 - The first ship-to-shore wireless message is received in the U.S.
1904 - The Automobile tire chain is patented.
1914 - Japan declares war on Germany.
1924 - Mars makes its closest approach to Earth since the 10th century.
1939 - The U.S.S.R. and Germany sign a non-aggression pact.
1944 - Romania is liberated from Nazi occupation.
1960 - The world's largest frog (3.3 kg) is caught in Equatorial Guinea.
1961 - The U.S. lunar probe Ranger-1 reaches 190 km from Earth before falling back.
1966 - The Lunar Orbiter 1 takes its photograph of Earth from the Moon.
1973 - The Intelsat communications satellite is launched.
1977 - Bryan Allen, in the Gossamer Condor, makes the first man-powered flight of a mile.
1979 - Bolshoi Ballet dancer Alexander Godunov defects in New York City.
1979 - The U.N's Vienna office opens.

- French King Louis XVI (1774-92)
1785 - Oliver Hazard Perry, U.S. Naval hero
1869 - James (Sunny Jim) Rolph, San Francisco mayor (1912-31), MUNI backer
19-- - Cathy St. George, Playboy playmate (Aug, 1982)
1901 - John Sherman Cooper (Sen-KY)
1912 - Gene Kelly Pitts, dancer/actor (An American in Paris, Going My Way)
1930 - Michel Rocard, Prime Minister of France
1933 - Pete Wilson (Sen-CA)
1944 - Antonia Novello, US Surgeon General
1951 - Queen Noor of Jordan
1966 - Laura Richmond, Playboy playmate (Sep, 1988)
1967 - Nancy Jane Cox, Miss Kentucky-America-1991

- Oliver Hazard Perry, U.S. Naval hero, on his 34th birthday
1926 - Rodolpho Alfonzo Rafaello Pietro Filiberto Guglieimi Di Valentina
D'Antonguolla (Rudolph Valentino), silent movie idol, at age 31
1927 - Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti executed in MA (robbery / murder)
1989 - Yusef Hawkins, African-American youth beaten by 30 whites and then shot to death (Bensonhurst, NY)

Reported Missing in Action
Baker, Elmo C., USAF (MO); F105D shot down, released by DRV March, 1973 - retired as a Colonel - alive and well as of 1998
*** decorations include Silver Star with 3 OLC, Bronze Star with Device, Distinguished Flying Cross with 3 OLC, Air Medal with 10 OLC, Purple Heart, Legion of Merit***

Braswell, Donald R., US Army; escaped August, 1967 (w/Holt)

Carrigan, Larry E., USAF (AZ); F4D shot down (navigator / bombadier, w/Lane), released by DRV March, 1973 - alive as of 1999

Gerndt, Gerald L., USAF (WI); F4D shot down (pilot, w/Sawhill), released by DRV March, 1973 - alive and well as of 1998

Holt, Dewey T., Civilian; escaped August, 1967 (w/Braswell)

Lane, Charles, USAF (SD); F4D shot down (pilot, w/Carrigan)

Midnight, Francis B., USAF (IN); F4D shot down (pilot)

Ness, Patrick L., USN (MN); F4B shot down (radio intercept officer, w/Sitek) by direct SAM hit, KIA, remains returned April, 1986

Sittner, Ronald N., USAF (OH); F4D shot down ("GIB", w/Tyler), remains returned December, 1997

Sawhill, Robert R., USAF (PA); F4D shot down (w/Gerndt), released by DRV March, 1973 - retired as a Colonel - alive as of 1998

Sitek, Thomas W., USN (NY); F4B shot down (pilot, w/Ness), KIA, body not recovered

Tyler, Charles R., USAF (AZ); F4D shot down (pilot, w/Sittner) released by DRV March, 1973 - alive and well as of 1998

Bergevin, Charles L., USAF (CT); RF4c disappeared while on reconnaissance mission over Quang Binh province (navigator, w/Setterquist); presumed KIA, body not recovered
*** My adopted MIA hero - see post here ***

Ferguson, Walter, Jr., US Army (NY); DIC May, 1970

Setterquist, Francis L., USAF (MN); RF4C disappeared while on reconnaissance mission over Quang Binh province (pilot, w/Bergevin), presumed KIA, body not recovered