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Friday, November 11, 2005

Project Valour-IT: Down to the Wire

Today is the last day of the blogging competition. And as of this very moment, Army is just barely - and I mean just barely - ahead of the Squids.

The real news is the totals for all teams - check out these numbers. Wow!

Thanks to my Mom and my brother-in-law for their snailmail donations - didn't I tell you guys those don't count for the competition?? PayPal, guys, PayPal!! C'mon, this is bragging rights here! (Seriously, thank you - competition or no, you helped to get much needed equipment to our wounded heroes, so I am very, very grateful).

But the rest of you, send those emails! Hang those flyers! Bloggers, post, post, POST! We only have a little while to ensure that Army comes out on top!

And what better way to honor our Veterans than to do something for those who gave so much for us?

I'll make it easy for you - if you're not sure how to let people know about the competition or the program, I have an easy email you can just forward along. Just email me and I'll send it to you.

Still not convinced? (Don't know how that's possible, but...)

Take a look at One Soldier's Valour-IT story, brought to you by Fuzzybear Lioness.

While you're there, don't forget to check on the story behind the story of Carren Ziegenfuss' appearance on MSNBC!

A Veteran's Day Message from the Poet Patriot

I Thank those who have served.

I have not served but I believe my poetry will convey the sentiments of those who value liberty.
History teaches that pacifism does not protect against threats to peace. Peace with force may not be peace, but peace without force is fragile. Peace has only been achieved by force resulting in either of two forms of peace. One form is an oppressive peace as when the German Nazis over-ran other countries or peace in freedom when oppressors are fought and suppressed as after the victory of the allied forces in World War II. Peace cannot exist without force. Peace when left to its own device dies a slow demise. Our veterans are the peace keepers of a civilized society.

I Applaud for Liberty
by Roger W Hancock

Together hands applaud,
Those that fight for Freedom.
My hands have held no weapon,
To defend my liberty.
Yet with these hands,
I strive to honor,
Those who risk their lives.
Fingers of my hands,
On keyboard write the poems.
Words express the honor,
For bravery on my behalf.
Liberty upon the soldier’s back,
Freely given, kept for me.
Though I safely write a phrase,
I know to whom I owe.
First to God and then to those,
Who fight for liberty.

Copyright May 4, 2004 Roger W Hancock

Baghdad Tears
by Roger W Hancock

On an Iraqi street in Baghdad,
A soldier mourns as he kneels,
Beside fallen American comrade.

Tears shed for one who died,
Sacrificed to free oppressed,
For Iraqi newborn freedom.

American modern minuteman,
On foreign soil to teach,
Sacrifices for liberty.

American in Iraq mourns,
On a dusty Baghdad street.
A little Iraqi girl... wipes away his tears.

Copyright, July 22, 2004 Roger W Hancock

It's The Veteran
by Roger W Hancock

Backbone of liberty; fighting to keep us free,
Sacrifice homeland safety; battles fought abroad.
First Veterans; founding fathers,
Gave to us our freedom's liberty.

'Twas not the preacher, campus organizer,
Who fought for religions free . . . free assembly.
Veterans fought for your assembly, worship free.

It was not the lawyer, politician,
Who gave your right to vote . . . trials fair.
Veterans fought for your voice, equal treatment.

Nor was it the poet, reporter,
That fought for free press . . . free speech.
Veterans fought for unbiased news, talk. . . fear free.

Saluting the flag under which he serves,
Veteran's foundation sacrifice.
Freedom mortared by brave blood spilt . . .
Maintains our liberty rights.

(c) Copyright February 16, 2004 Roger W Hancock

Many More at

Thank you for my Liberty !

Have a Great Day,

Roger W. Hancock

Graphics courtesy of Doug Kidd

Veteran's Day 2005


In Arlington, Grandfather rests
Grandmother by his side
Rows and rows of crosses
Guard the veteran and his bride.

He died long before she did.
She would have 20 years to go
before she joined the husband
she had married long ago.

He had fought somewhere in France
In what became the first World War;
never dreaming when he slept
that time would bring even more.

His daughter married a soldier
who then became my dad
He fought in the Second War
the World had ever had.

I loved and married an airman
the father of my son;
but the Airman went to Vietnam
and left me all alone.

My son then joined the Army,
and two nephews and a niece
Have followed in their footsteps-
standing guard for Peace

Our family is serving, and
has served the World around ~
You can be sure we understand
what is meant by Sacred Ground.

©Copyright November 1997 by Christina
Updated 11/05

Henry A. Moore, Robert H. Phillips, Sr., Michael T. Ream,
Dustin H. Haskell, Jesse J. Haskell, Shannon M. Haskell

How We Recall
How we recall that day we swore

To serve our country to the core

That clothing issued brought a view

Of raw recruits, this showed so true

Remembered hair was cut away

This look for quite awhile would stay

Our trek before too long did show

New GI's marching, row by row

And then one day emerged a form

Each proud trained troop in uniform

We followed orders as we should

To do our best, in pride we would

Some served in peace, some went to war

Brave heroes passed through Heaven's door

We cherished friends who served with us

Great buddies all, how we'd discuss

So many thoughts will never wane

For what we shared, let closeness reign

Our bond was tight, the best to see

For when we served, this had to be

The purpose was to keep you free

God Bless the brave, deservedly

©2004 Roger J. Robicheau



Jerry and Ann in Oregon


To All of Our Heroes -

A hearty THANK YOU and GOD BLESS YOU ALL who now serve, and have served, so nobly in defense of our country. From private to general, you have all made us proud to be Americans, and so proud to be your countrymen. You truly are the best of us. On your special day, we salute you all. Thank you for your service to our country, and for your example as citizens.

Dana in Washington state
A Soldier's Angel

Thank you all, past, present, and future Vets....

You are ALL in my heart and thoughts everyday, to me, everyday is Veterans Day....

To may father, I love and miss you, for your fight in WWII and surviving your internment in a German POW Camp,

To My Uncle "Red" for surviving the Bataan Death March before you left our world while on the Hell Ship Arisan Maru....

This is yours and all Veterans Day,

But let us all remember each day what you have given us and others around the world in the name of FREEDOM,

If it was not for you and so many others with the same Heart, Pride, and Honor that are gone and fighting this day, we here at home could not have and enjoy all this world has to offer, along with the daily comforts we all take for granted......

Thank You .....
Rose F.

Dear Heroes:
I would like to take this opportunity to say a BIG THANK YOU to all those who have served and are currently serving. Your service and dedication is greatly appreciated and not taken for granted.



Donna Zehner
Proud Army Mom
Proud Member of Soldier's Angels

A Veteran's Day War Story
Because a handful of us spent a great deal of time helping a local orphanage in Diyarbakir (most of the kids were survivors of the PKK terrorists, and their families had been killed), some of the locals wanted to repay us by taking us to ancient ruins and monuments that were thousands of years old. We even got to go to cavemen caves along the inner ridge of one mountain. Ancient kings' tombs, castles that were not hundreds, but thousands of years old. Ancient walls that wrapped around the mountains, no telling how old they were. Amazing stuff for an anthropologist wannabe (that would be me).

Well we went on this trek, hiked over two large mountains to get to some amazing ruins and caves. Meanwhile, back at the small village where we left the bus, our illustrious chefs (hah!) fixed us a very nice lunch, several coolers full of ice, and sodas. It was a several hour hike one way, and on the way back, we kept getting dehydrated and would have to stop, rest and try to rehydrate. By the time we got back to the bus, we had run out of the water in our canteens and raced on the bus for a hint of shade, and those coolers at the back of the bus.

They were empty! ALL the sodas AND sandwiches were gone! We looked out the windows of the bus, and saw all the villagers, looking at us curiously drinking our nice, cold sodas, and we almost had a riot on our hands. They left most of the ice, that had melted into cold water, and we were dunking our heads in the coolers to get some relief. We told the bus driver to tell them that was very bad for them to steal our food and drinks. They said they thought we had left
them there for them as gifts (ya right). Well someone had taken a peek in the coolers on the way there and busted out laughing. We were like, "what is so damned funny?" He said, "they ate ham sandwiches". We all laughed so hard, and told the bus driver to tell the villagers that they had stolen, so they were cursed with eating ham sandwiches. As soon as the bus driver had told the village leader (he already had the engine running) he slammed the door and hit the pedal to the metal, and the villagers ran after us cursing and throwing coke cans at the bus as we hauled out of there pronto! LOL

There's one of my "war stories" from SE Turkey, near the border of Iraq. Enclosed is a pic of me half way up the second mountain, working our way to the ruins at the top.

To All Veterans of the US Armed Forces -
Your sacrifices will never be forgotten.
A Soldiers' Angel

My name is Louis, I believe every day should be Veterans Day. The US soldier of yesterday and today have fought for our freedom and there are not enough people in this country who respect our men and women who have given their life and time to give us the freedom we have today. I think this country needs to open their eyes and see what the men and women have given us, and for thatI thank each and every one of them, my prayers go out to each and evey one of our people who are fighting to day. May God keep you safe and return you home safe.

The following are two essays I wrote; the first in early 2004. The second I wrote in October 2004 while putting together packages. It was inspired by my first Soldiers' Angels
adoptee, a 1st Cavalry Scout. I've posted them before, but thought they were worth a repost for Veteran's Day. --Pam

Why I love a Man in Uniform
From the way people say it, you'd think it was just one of those guaranteed things in life. The sun comes up in the morning, grass is green, and women love a man in uniform. Somewhere along the line, women just developed this affinity for fighting men. I don't profess to know what lies in the depths of our evolutionary process, but I do know why I love them. And of course now, like never before, there are women in uniform. And I love them too. The reasons seem obvious to me, but, sadly are so often overlooked as to leave me dumbfounded. Allow me to explain...

I love them because they are brave.
They stand in front of enemies I will never have to face, and say "This is the line. You go no further than here." They face untold challenges and trials, and keep doing their jobs. They face gunfire, and mortars, and minefields, and RPG fire, and IEDs, and still they are there.

I love them because they have honor.
They say "Ma'am" and "Sir." They salute their superiors. Even in the horror of war, they do not sink to the level of the enemy. They do not drive bombs loaded with explosives into crowded markets. They do not fly planes full of innocent people into buildings. They do not drag bodies through the streets. In fact, they try to save a wounded enemy's life as zealously as they would a comrade's. They wear the flag of the United States of America with pride, and take seriously their status as representatives and protectors of our country.

I love them because they are ordinary, and yet so extraordinary; they are heroes.
They are the sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers of everyday people like me. And yet, they charge up hills, single-handedly killing snipers, silencing machine gun nests, and capturing enemy positions (2nd Lt. Ernest Childers, US Army, Oliveto, Italy, 1943). They voluntarily go into almost certain death to protect wounded comrades (Master Sgt. Gary Gordon, and Sgt. First Class Randall Shughart, US Army, Mogadishu, Somalia 1993). They show the enemy that they would rather die than give in, thereby inspiring other POW's, and convincing their captors to become more civilized in their treatment (Then-Captain James B. Stockdale, US Navy, Vietnam, 1969). They steer vulnerable boats through blistering enemy fire to rescue Marines pinned down on a beach (Signalman 1st Class Douglas Munro, USCG, Guadalcanal, 1942). They race through enemy terrain to save a wounded fellow soldier, shield him from grenades, and literally take a bullet for him (Pvt. 1st Class Oscar P. Austin, USMC, Vietnam, 1969). They make me believe that even I could make a difference.

There is something that happens to an ordinary person when they become a member of our Armed forces. They become a protector, a role model, a hero. And yes, there are occasions when that mortality, that inherent weakness of all humans, is visible. There are unpleasant incidents that occur so rarely as to be shocking, judged through the lens of haughty superiority so unfortunately common to those of us who will never understand what it means to be in the middle of combat. They are vilified for occasionally reacting to what the critics will never have to face, and yet, almost universally, they say nothing. Despite the cries of "baby killer" and "criminal," and all the other darts thrown, they say nothing to return the enmity, nothing to return the caustic criticism of their outraged countrymen. Inexplicably, they continue to fight for our right to greet their efforts with disdain and hatred. I love them because even in the worst of circumstances, they remain Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines.

I believe that they deserve gratitude, as well as latitude. I believe that they deserve our love, and the good judgment to keep our mouths firmly clamped shut when there is opportunity to give harsh commentary on something we will never understand. I believe that when they cross the line, they deserve to be judged by those who do understand, not taunted and demonized by those who never will. I believe that they deserve parades and celebration when they return from war, and when they return from peacetime activity. I believe they deserve yellow ribbons carefully tied around trees, letters and packages sent from people they don't know through groups formed solely to support them. I believe they deserve signs in windows, on cars, on billboards, proclaiming our pride in each and every one of them. I believe that they have bought this with their blood, the sacrifice of life, and limb, the forfeiture of years meant to be spent watching children grow up and holidays meant to be spent with family. I believe we owe them more than we will ever be able to repay, but that we all have a duty to try. I believe we have an obligation to say "Thank You," at least once, in whatever way we choose.

And whatever branch they are in, wherever they serve, whoever they are, I love them. They are the best of us. They are the reason we remain free, the reason we sleep without fear of invasion. They are Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines. And let's face it; they do look darned good in those uniforms...

Things My Soldier Taught Me:
He taught me to speak up:
This may come as a complete surprise to those of you who've had any contact with me on the Boards, via email, or in PM's (and now on the blog), but I used to be incredibly shy. In recent years, I've gotten better. Now I'm pretty much shameless. I regularly approach people to sign the message book I'm putting together for my Soldier. I thank Soldiers I see. Recently, I sent out a slew of letters requesting donations for Operation Santa. And I've had more than one discussion with people who felt the need to be anti-war, usually centering around anything anti-troop. I've learned to speak my mind without hesitation, to let them know exactly what I think of the brave men and women who serve this country, who protect people like me. I don't mind folks being against the war, although I personally don't share that point of view, but I cannot abide being anti-troop. I used to just shake my head and stay angry for a while, but not say much. Now, I make it known right away where I stand. My office boasts an Iraqi bill in an acrylic frame, sent to me by my Soldier. It boasts a picture of my Soldier and two of his comrades. My car has yellow ribbons, as does my motorcycle. My motorcycle also has a POW sticker, and one that says "In memory of all of those who did not return from Viet Nam." And my yard has yellow ribbons, American flag ribbons, and an American flag. There's an Army flag in the front window of my house. There's a POW / MIA flag on my garage door. And I am rarely seen leaving my house without my 1st Cavalry Division baseball cap on.

He taught me gratitude:
I have always been supportive of our troops, no matter what they're doing. I have always had an immense amount of respect for the people who put themselves in harm's way so that I will never have to. But in my contact with the wonderful people serving in our Armed Forces, I have learned a further, immeasurable amount of gratitude. When my Soldier writes to me of the things he's been doing, of the things he's seen, I am stunned by the magnitude of what they all do. A few packages and letters can never express my thanks. But it's something, I suppose, and right now it's all I have. And I will continue to spend every spare moment I have trying to repay the debt I owe.I appreciate more each day the gifts that life has given me. I have a roof over my head, food on my table, a wonderful husband, and live in a country where I can speak my mind, where I can vote, where I can leave my house without fear of persecution, and worship as I choose. And I have the ability to take all of that for granted if I choose, thanks to the men and women who have fought and died to give me that.

He taught me humility:
It is an amazingly humbling thing to realize what our service members do for us. Whenever I start to take myself too seriously, I think about what these brave people do in one day, and it just stuns me. I am proud of my accomplishments, but I also know what a real hero is.

He taught me perspective:
I'm Irish and Scottish, and well, I can have a bit of a temper. When my husband backed my car into something several months ago, the potential was there for a grade-A dressing down. Granted, I was angry. But I'd just gotten a letter the day before from my Soldier, talking about the things that had gone on with his unit. I was starting in on my tirade, when it hit me. I just looked at my husband and said, "You know what? I'm not happy about this. I'm pretty annoyed. But in the grand scheme of things, this isn't that big a deal. You're here with me, instead of in Iraq. And the car's just a thing." And that was it. Anger gone.And three weeks ago, I was involved in what could have been a devastating car accident. I walked away, thanks to good old American engineering, an airbag, and a bit of luck. The car had a great deal of damage, and my husband was a little irritated that they didn't total the car. Me? I said, "I could have been killed. I'm bruised, sore, but otherwise fine. Worst case scenario, I get my car repaired. The way I see it, I'm ok, the car's just a car, and the rest of it's just gravy. "With every "bad day" I have, my reaction to it is tempered by the knowledge of what a bad day really is. A bad day is when a friend of yours is killed in action, or wounded. A bad day is a car bombing, an IED, a firefight. A bad day is getting shot at. Any day that you have a job, you have a family, you have a roof over your head, food on the table, and no one's shooting at you, is NOT a bad day.

He taught me who I am:
I am a proud American. I believe in the values of our country, in our rights, in our freedoms. I am a caring person. I am a loving wife. I am honored to be called a friend by one of the finest people it has been my privilege to know; a Staff Sergeant in the United States Army. I am funny. I am creative. I make Soldiers and Marines laugh in the middle of a bad day. I am thanked by people for whom I do not have the words to express enough gratitude. At the end of my life, I will be able to say that in some small way, I made a difference somewhere along the line.I am a Soldiers' Angel.

To my grandfathers, Richard and John, to my step-grandfather Dick, to my grandfather-in-law Joseph, to my father-in-law Joe, to my stepfather Bob, to my former adoptees (now safely home) Christian and Mike F., to my adoptees Clif and Henry, to my epal Mike S., to Juan, to Cisco, to Gil, to Emily, to Derrick, to Mike R., and to all my "unofficials" along the way, to all I've been privileged to meet through the Letter Writing Team, to Jeff P., to all the milbloggers who have informed and inspired, and to all who have served, currently serve, and will serve - Thank you.

Veteran's Day Links:

Families Forever

America Supports You
Department of Veterans' Affairs

Veteran's Day Facts:
(from U.S. Census Bureau - Veteran's Day)
Veterans Day originated as “Armistice Day” on Nov. 11, 1918. Its purpose: to commemorate the end of World War I. First proclaimed by Congress in 1926, and each year thereafter, Armistice Day became “Veterans Day” in 1954 as a result of legislation signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. The name was changed to honor all who served the nation in wars or conflicts. Veterans Day has been observed annually on this date since 1978, except for a brief period when it was celebrated on the fourth Monday of October.

24.5 million
The number of military veterans in the United States.
(From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

1.7 million
The number of veterans who are women.
(From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

9.5 million
The number of veterans who are age 65 or older.
(From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

2.3 million
The number of black veterans. Additionally, 1.1 million veterans are Hispanic; 276,000 are Asian; 185,000 are American Indian or Alaska native; and 25,000 are native Hawaiian and other Pacific islander. (The numbers for blacks, Asians, American Indians and Alaska natives and native Hawaiians and other Pacific islanders cover only those reporting a single race.) (From the AmericanFactFinder.)

8.2 million
Number of Vietnam-era veterans. More than 30 percent of all veterans served in Vietnam, the largest share of any period of service. The next largest share of wartime veterans, 3.9 million or fewer than 20 percent, served during World War II.
(From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

Percentage of Persian Gulf War veterans who are women. In contrast, women account for 5 percent of World War II vets, 3 percent of Vietnam vets and 2 percent of Korean War vets. (From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

Number of veterans who served during both the Vietnam era and in the Gulf War.

In addition,
383,000 veterans served during both the Korean War and the Vietnam conflict.

107,000 served during three periods: World War II, the Korean War and the
Vietnam conflict.

376,000 served in World War II and the Korean War.
(Source: AmericanFactFinder.)

Number of states with 1 million or more veterans. These states are California (2.3 million), Florida (1.8 million), Texas (1.7 million), New York (1.2 million), Pennsylvania (1.1 million) and Ohio (1.1 million).
(From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

$22.4 billion
Aggregate amount of money received annually by the 2.6 million veterans receiving compensation for service-connected disabilities.
(From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

$59.6 billion
Total amount of federal government spending for veterans benefits programs in fiscal year 2004. (From the upcoming Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2006.)

Graphics in this post courtesy of:

Please trackback your Veteran's Day post, or link any great sites you've found in the comments section!

Additional Links (to be added as I find them):

ROFASix: "A Tribute to the Greatest Generation"

Argghhh!: Veterans' Day 2005

Stop the ACLU: Veteran's Day Open Trackbacks

Michelle Malkin: Veteran's Day

Fuzzilicious Thinking: Veterans' Day Gets Personal

And don't forget to check the trackbacks for other great Veteran's Day posts!

NOTE: edited 11/11/05 to fix formatting and other errors.
MARINE PATROL -- U.S. Marines assigned to the 6th Civil Affairs Group conduct a routine survey of Fallujah, Iraq, to better assist the Iraqi population, Oct. 29, 2005. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl Adam B. Groenhout

In Today's news - Friday, November 11, 2005

Quote of the Day
But fame is theirs - and future days
On pillar'd brass shall tell their praise;
Shall tell - when cold neglect is dead -
"These for their country fought and bled."
-- Philip Freneau

News of Note
Veteran's Day
Veterans Remembered
The History of Veteran's Day
Volunteer Pilots Ferry Aging Vets to DC
Time Catching Up to WWI Vets
Veterans Day Special to Iraqi Freedom Vets

Operation Iraqi Freedom
Baghdad Bombs Kill 40
Rice Visits Iraq
Rice Urges Iraqis to Bridge Differences

Operation Enduring Freedom
Cargo Plane Crashes Into Afghan Mountains

Homeland Security / War on Terror
Senate Intel Chair Pushes Expanded Patriot Act
Frist Worried About Leak,Not Secret CIA Prisons
House Panel Probing Leak
Indonesia Escalates Hunt for Terror Leader
Trinidadian Police Arrest Islamic Leader

Jordan Bombings
'Burn in Hell, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi'
Jordan questions suspects after Amman hotel bombings
Leaders Condemn Attacks in Jordan Remarks

Paris Burning
France Riot Stance Working
Chirac Seeks to Learn Lessons From Unrest

Arnold Takes Responsibility for Failed Ballot Initiatives
Rove Praises Miers, Attacks Dems Before Federalists

Supreme Court
Alito Responds to Dems Inquiry About 2002 Case

Military News
October Recruiting Goals Met
Soldiers Awarded Distinguished Flying Cross
Troops Celebrate Marine's 230th Birthday
Marine Security Unit, Bahrain Celebrates Birthday
Photos: Marines Celebrate Birthday in Afghanistan

Other News of Note
Italians Seek Extradition of CIA Agents

Fox News
Robertson: God May Smite Anti-Evolution Town
Charred Remains of Missing Girl Found in Salvage Yard
Missing American Girl Turns Up at Brazilian Police Station
Stocks to Watch: Dell, Kohl's
Sony CD Virus Reported Microsoft 'Concerned'
30-Year Mortgage Rates Up
Oil Hits Three-Month Low

Reuters: Top News
Three hurt by car bomb in Baghdad: police
Pirates attack more ships: official
New Orleans prosecutor to review police shooting
High-court nominee denies conflicts of interest
Paris police on high alert, unrest eases elsewhere
New Labour chief seeks Israel poll
Bush to swing back at Democrats
Ford unveils mini-fleet of hybrid NY taxis
Justice Dept. proposes tougher copyright laws
China unlikely to sign on to Kyoto emissions cuts
US FDA warns about J&J patch hormone levels
Britain to consider first 'double jeopardy' case
Buyout firms wait for airlines to heal themselves

AP World News
Amid Deep Discord, N.Korea Nuke Talks End
China Reports New Bird-Flu Outbreaks
Russia, EU, US Discuss Iran Nuke Dispute
Police Break Up Protest by Quake Survivors
Mexico Charges Seven Cops With Kidnapping
Thousands Attend Arafat Memorial in Gaza
Liberian May Be 1st Female African Leader
U.S., Darfur Official Have Shouting Match
Cabinet Ministers Rally Around Blair
Peru Withdraws Its Ambassador From Japan
U.S., Europe Agree to Compromise With Iran
VA Cancels Review of Stress Claims

CENTCOM: News Release

Department of Defense
Search for Zarqawi Continues Video
Rumsfeld: Iraqis Progress in Security Efforts -- Story
U.S. Contractors Destroy, Recycle Munitions -- Story

Tall Afar Residents Benefit from Rebuilding -- Story
Operation Pil Aids Security in Kunar Province -- Story

Brigade Transfers Authority at Camp Victory
Coalition Forces, Iraqis Open Soccer Field Photos
Troops Convert Trash Lot to Soccer Field for Kids
Medal of Honor Recipients Visit Troops

Afghan, U.S. Soldiers Prepare for Winter
Virgin Island Reservists Serve in Afghanistan

Marine Updates Iraqis as Troops Perform Missions -- Story

Group Trumpets Taps for Veterans -- Story

Hurricane Coverage
Iraq Transition of Power

Nabbed al Qaeda Forger Identified
Steel Curtain Moves Into Karabilah
Soldiers Secure Suicide Bomb Site
Coalition, Iraqis Discover Weapons
Baghdad Car Bombs Kill at Least 5
Marine Dies From Bomb Blast
Iraq Reconstruction
Iraq Daily Update
Multinational Force Iraq
Eye on Iraq Update (pdf)
Iraq Progress Fact Sheet (pdf)
Weekly Progress Report (pdf)
'Boots on the Ground' Audio Archive
Fact Sheet: Helping Women in Iraq

Military Courts Nearly in Session
Afghans Thwart Attack, Detain 2
Afghan Army Chief Visits U.S.
Afghanistan Daily Update

Directive Sets Interrogation Policy
Fact Sheet: War on Terror
Fact Sheet: Terror Plots Disrupted
Waging and Winning the War on Terror
Terrorism Timeline
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Program Helps Troubled Vets
VA Secretary Extends Thanks
Enlisted Advisor Visits NORAD
National Guard, Reserve Update

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


National Hurricane Center

Today in History
1620 - Pilgrims land in MA, signing the Mayflower Compact (just and equal laws).
1647 - Massachusetts passes the first U.S. compulsory school attendance law.
1648 - The Dutch and French agree to divide St. Maarten and the Leeward Islands.
1778 - Iroquois in NY kill 40 in the Cherry Valley Massacre.
1811 - Cartagena, Colombia declares independence from Spain.
1864 - Union General Sherman's troops destroy Rome, GA.
1865 - Mary Edward Walker, the first U.S. Army female surgeon, is awarded the Medal of Honor.
1889 - Washington is admitted as the 42nd U.S. state.
1918 - Armistice Day-WW I ends at 11 AM on the Western Front.
- President Harding dedicates the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
1922 - The largest U.S. flag is displayed (150' X 90'); it is expanded in 1939 (270' X 90').
1924 - In San Francisco, the Palace of the Legion of Honor is dedicated.
1925 - Robert Millikan announces the discovery of cosmic rays.
1931 - Cornerstones laid for the Opera House & Veterans Building.
1933 - The "Great Black Blizzard" - the first great dust storm in the Great Plains.
1935 - The Explorer-2 balloon sets an altitude record of 72,000 feet over SD.
1939 - Kate Smith first sings Irving Berlin's "God Bless America."
1940 - A blizzard strikes the midwestern U.S., killing over 100.
1942 - Germany completes their occupation of France.
1959 - The first episode of "Rocky and His Friends" airs.
1965 - Rhodesia is proclaimed independent of Britain.
1966 - Gemini-12 is launched on a 4-day flight.
1968 - The Maldives (in the Indian Ocean) become a republic.
1972 - The U.S. Army turns over Long Bihn base to the South Vietnamese army.
1975 - Angola gains independence from Portugal; the Australian PM is removed by the crown (first elected PM removed in 200 years).
1982 - The 5th space shuttle mission-Columbia 5-is launched (the first commercial flight); Polish Solidarity leader Lech Walesa is let out of jail.
1983 - President Reagan becomes the first U.S. President to address Japan's legislature.
1985 - Yonkers is found guilty of segregating schools and housing.
1987 - Judge Anthony M. Kennedy is nominated to the Supreme Court.

1050 - Henry IV, Holy Roman emperor (1036-1106)
1744 - Abigail Smith Adams, second First Lady
1748 - King Charles IV of Spain (1788-1808)
1771 - Ephraim McDowell, surgeon (pioneered abdominal surgery)
1821 - Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky, Russian novelist (Crime & Punishment)
1864 - Alfred Hermann Fried, German pacifist (Nobel 1911)
1869 - King Victor Emmanuel III of Italy (1900-46)/Ethiopia
1885 - George S. Patton, U.S. General "Old Blood & Guts"
- Hugh Scott (Sen-PA)
1901 - Sam Spiegel, producer (On the Waterfront, Bridge over River Kwai)
1904 - Alger Hiss, State Department official and spy
1911 - King Hussein of Jordan.
1915 - William Proxmire (Sen-WI) (Golden Fleece Awards)
1945 - Daniel Ortega Saavedra, President of Nicaragua (1984-1990)

1831 - Nat Turner, former slave who led a violent insurrection, hanged in VA
1962 - Rene Coty, President of France
1984 - Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr.
1987 - L.T. Coggeshall, medical scientist (Secretary of HEW 1956-58)

Reported Missing in Action
Biss, Robert Irvin, USAF (PA); F4C shot down (pilot, w/Monlux), released by DRV March, 1973 - retired as a Lt. Colonel - alive and well as of 1998

Butt, Richard L., USAF (VA); F4C shot down (weapons/systems operator, w/Ringsdorf) - remains returned April, 1986

Mearns, Arthur, USAF (NY); F105D shot down - remains returned September, 1977

Monlux, Harold D., USAF (IA); F4C shot down (w/Biss), released by DRV March, 1973 - alive as of 1998

Ringsdorf, Herbert B., USAF (AL); F4C shot down (pilot, w/Butt), released February, 1973 - deceased as of February, 1998

Swindle, Orson G. III, USMC (GA); F8E shot down, released by DRV March, 1973 - retired as a Lt. Colonel - alive and well as of this year, served as a Federal Trade Commissioner 1997-2005

Martinez-Mercado, Edwin J., US Army (NY); KIA, body not recovered

Shaw, Gary F., US Army (OH); KIA, body not recovered

Staton, Robert M., Jr., US Army (NC); KIA, body not recovered

Stuckey, John S., Jr., US Army (IN); KIA, body not recovered