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Thursday, February 09, 2006

Latest from Michael and the Transportation Angels

Michael sent me this email, about the latest efforts of this group of 359th Transportation Company Vets who are supporting some of our heroes in Iraq:

Hi Pam: I just got a couple of emails from Sgt M--- in Iraq. He just made my day!! As a starter, I'm sending a couple of pics of the care packages before mailing. I had wish lists so had to be organized. These took 6 days to get there. Not bad. I could tell that Cpt W--- & Sgt M--- didn't have cameras because it was like pulling teeth to get them to send pictures. So I bought them each a small digital camera.

I am so glad I found Soldiers Angels. I just can't tell you how rewarding it is. Hell, what am I saying?? You already know.

Here are some of the pictures Sgt. M--- sent - Lots of rain + desert environment = flood!:

More pictures to come later - Michael, you and all your buddies are just awesome - all that and a bag of chips!

Sgt. M & Cpt. W - so are you. Thanks for all you do for all of us back home in the States. Take care, and stay safe!

PATROL SECURITY — U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. John Foster, assigned to the 1st Combat Camera Squadron, Charleston Air Force Base, S.C., provides security and captures images during a Stryker patrol in Mosul, Iraq, Feb. 5, 2006. U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. John M. Foster

Blogwatch - One American's View...Like it or Not

National Military Strategic Plan for the War on Terrorism
Today the DOD Joint Chiefs of Staff released the 2006 "National Military Strategic Plan for the War on Terrorism" Anyone who is interested in what our Governments plans or opinions are on these issues should read this document.

You can get it at :

Here is an excerpt on how they describe the "Enemy".:

Nature of the Enemy
The enemy is a transnational movement of extremist organizations, networks, and individuals -- and their state and non-state supporters -- which have in common that they exploit Islam and use terrorism for ideological ends. The Al Qa’ida Associated Movement (AQAM), comprised of al Qa’ida and affiliated extremists, is the most dangerous present manifestation of such extremism. Certain other violent extremist groups also pose a serious and continuing threat.

There is a direct relationship between the enemies’ motivations and the willingness to use terror tactics. The enemies of the United States and its partners are motivated by extremist ideologies antagonistic to freedom, tolerance, and moderation. These ideologies have given rise to an enemy network of extremist organizations and their state sponsors and non-state supporters.

Pretty darned good reading so far, eh? Go check it out.
C-17 finds home at Hickam AFB
HICKAM AIR FORCE BASE, Hawaii (AFPN) -- When “The Spirit of Hawaii Ke Aloha” landed on the flightline here it delivered a new era of air operations for the Pacific Air Forces and the U.S. Pacific Command. Hickam is the first base outside the continental U.S. to permanently host the strategic airlifters. By the end of the year the base will be home to eight C-17 Globemaster IIIs.

Soldiers' Angels in the News Again

Remember that electronic Valentine's Day card I told you about - the one Soldiers' Angels set up with the Library of Life? Well, lookie here...

from Defend America:

America Supports You: International Bond Makes e-Valentine for Troops
By Paul X. Rutz
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Feb. 8, 2006 – A British organization has reached across the ocean to join an American group in the common purpose of supporting the troops, creating a Web site that acts as a giant Valentine's Day card.

"We felt strongly that the Library of Life and our organization did share a common bond in wanting to get messages that were supportive and appreciative to our troops," said Ana-Marie Smith, president of Soldiers' Angels. "And they've been wonderful."

"Library of Life," an online message center, and "Soldiers' Angels," a group sending support to deployed troops, have created a site called "Operation Love Our Troops," which has so far collected over 14,400 messages.

Volunteers from both nonprofits gave interviews in front of the Times Square Armed Forces Recruiting Station to New York TV affiliates, radio stations and newspapers yesterday. They stayed through much of the day, offering passers-by the chance to write messages to the troops, Smith said.

"There were four laptop computers so that a person could just walk right up and send a message right there to the troops," she said. Two large canopies in front of the recruiting station had framed posters, signs. Volunteers wore red caps and logos advertising Soldiers' Angels and the Library of Life.

Soldiers' Angels has sent care packages, calling cards and letters to deployed troops since 2003, Smith said. An Internet community with an estimated 60,000 members, it works closely with America Supports You, a Defense Department program facilitating grassroots support for the troops.

"My main reason for wanting to get involved with this is we see lots of involvement from companies and organizations and churches around Christmas," she said. "Immediately after the holiday ends, we don't hear anything. It's a real quiet time as far as getting volunteers, and also donations."

When Library of Life approached her with the concept of a digital valentine, Smith said she loved the idea.

Henry Chamberlain, chief executive officer of Library of Life, said his organization began a year and a half ago in Great Britain. It provides a forum throughout the world where people can celebrate their lives together by sending messages and recordings.

The idea of working with another group to support deployed troops came out of that larger goal, and the partnership worked surprisingly well, especially since Library of Life had never worked on a military support project before.

"We thought it would only be military families who were sending messages, but I think the majority are actually just from the public," Chamberlain said. "We were overwhelmed by the response."

Chamberlain, a native of the United Kingdom, said the vast majority of response was American, mainly because it was promoted here, though several Canadians have left messages on the site, which Chamberlain sees as a great thing.

"It's not just for American troops, it's for all troops who are deployed at the moment," he said.

Chamberlain said working with Soldiers' Angels increased his respect for the job that group does supporting servicemembers.

When he arrived at the Times Square recruiting station to set up the event, he was impressed by the response he got when he mentioned Soldiers' Angels. "The guys in the recruiting station had all heard about them, and they said, 'Yeah, I've received a package before,' so I think they do a great job, and they're well known," he said.

Operation Love Our Troops will remain live on the Web as part of the larger Library of Life archive, Chamberlain said. The messages will remain, free to view and free to post, in perpetuity.

Chamberlain said he hopes this is only a first step in a larger effort to provide this kind of forum for supporters to send messages to deployed servicemembers.

"I think it's been proven that it's a good idea," he said. "We're going to continue helping people do that for free."

Related Sites:
Operation Love Our Troops
America Supports You

HOOAH to everyone at Soldiers' Angels and the Library of Life!
by Staff Sgt. Kevin Moses SrFebruary 8, 2006Soldiers from the 502nd Infantry Regiment await an airlift back to base after a successful operation in a village near Baghdad.

In Today's News - February 9, 2006

Quote of the Day
"The fact, in short, is that freedom, to be meaningful
in an organized society must consist of an
amalgam of hierarchy of freedoms and restraints."
-- Samuel Hendel

News of Note
Operation Iraqi Freedom
General: Corruption Hobbling Iraq Police
U.S. Officials Meet Iraq Insurgent Groups
U.S. says man held for trial in Iraq linked to terrorism

Homeland Security / War on Terror
Blast Kills 22 at Pakistan Shiite Religious Ceremony
Senate Building Evacuated After Nerve Agent Scare
Officials: American Among Yemen Prison Escapees
US straps down Guantanamo hunger strikers: report
Gitmo Hunger Strike Drops to Lowest Point
London Police: Mosque a Terrorist Haven

Hamas Rising
Hamas Warns Abbas Not to Make Changes

Cartooning Muhammad
Rice Blames Syria, Iran
Islamic Groups Call for End to Riots
Photo Essay: Muslim Riots Continue
Indonesia says media should learn from cartoon fury
Cartoon Protesters Direct Anger at U.S.
Other agendas thrive in furor over cartoons
Bush rips cartoon-fueled riots
Imams incited protests, Denmark says

NSA Hearings
GOP Chairwoman Wants Review of NSA Wiretaps
US secret court judges warned about NSA data: report
US secret court judges warned about NSA data: report
White House discloses new details on eavesdropping

McCain, Obama End Feud
Boehner's Ties to Abramoff
Bush defends spending cuts amid lawmakers' qualms
Medicare, Medicaid cuts now official
Will GOP hold on to Congress?
Cantwell, Reichert, Larsen targeted in Washington
Races to watch
Fractious Dems in search of a message missing chance to exploit GOP troubles

Winter Olympics
Underdog role suits coach

Max the dog loves trams but has no ticket
Undercover kitten used in N.Y. sting
Mouth-to-beak gets chicken clucking again
Rustic town tells store bright blue paint must go
'Missed the step and crash, bang, wallop'

Other News of Note
Yahoo accused in jailing of 2nd China Internet user

Fox News
Oldest Known T-Rex Found
Study: AIDS Drug Prevents Mother-to-Child Spread
Israelis Dig Up Muslim Cemetery Amid Protests
Church Fires Probed
Video: Suspicious Fires
Stocks Up Sharply
Bird Flu Reported in Nigeria
Murder Probe After 'Curious George' Editor Found Dead
Burning Auto Starts Calif. Fire- Video: Fires Plague Calif.
Sometimes You Can Make It
U2 dominates Grammys with five awards
Fast Facts: List of Winners
Stocks to Watch: News Corp.

Reuters: Top News
Israeli troops kill two gunmen at border: army
Haiti counts votes, Preval dances
Texas man executed for abducting, killing woman
Accused of censoring scientists, NASA vows reform
Space power China seeks further scientific prowess
DoCoMo, Nippon TV to consider mobile TV services
'Resident Evil 4' video game of the year-1UP Awards
Evangelical missionaries move into Amazon villages
Diver survives three days in ocean
FDA reports 51 deaths of attention drug patients
Newborns at risk with some antidepressants - study
AIG agrees to $1.6 bln settlement with SEC, NY: report
UK's Tesco to make first move into US in 2007
Unilever 2005 earnings jump, to sell frozen foods
Japan SMFG Q3 profit jumps, keeps outlook
Amkor posts quarterly profit vs loss; shares surge
Investors mull Icahn proposal
Vonage files for $250 million IPO
IBM to buy Viacore to boost supply chain offering
WestJet shares slide after profit lags estimates
Dell shares gain on Sanford Bernstein upgrade
Whole Foods falls 3.8 pct on Inet
InterActiveCorp posts profit, warns on marketing
Crocs shares rise 43.9 pct in Nasdaq debut
DeMartino: Amazon shares still pricey
Little respect
Metals market steadies after sell-off

AP World News
Delays Slow Haiti Vote Count
Argentine 'Dirty War' Suspect Arrested
Thousands Protest Nepal's King
Chavez Calls Blair 'Pawn of Imperialism'
Security Council Delays Ethiopia Decision
Italian Police Detail Raids on Art Dealers
Mexican AG Probing Journalist Attacks
Nepal King Hurt by Tainted Election
International Observers Abandon Hebron
China Pushing Environmental Cleanup
Cargo Ship Blocks Suez Canal
Poland's President Heads to U.S.

The Seattle Times
Local alternative paper: Let the readers decide
U.S. hits milestone as number of cancer deaths falls
New Orleans residents break the law to turn on the lights
Herb unlikely to help enlarged prostate
3 convicted in deadly human smuggling
Government mulls polar bears' plight
Fathers of girls vote more liberally on women's issues
Musician travels far to cast vote in Haiti
Deadly bird flu hits chickens in Nigeria
Korean Americans to get help finding kin in North
Racial brawls injures 19

Chicago Sun-Times
What makes a happy marriage?
SIU will open fellowships to all students
Mercury test shows area women at risk
Officials say they know who shot 3 in county jail
Late-night bars face crackdown
Foreign Internet services selling U.S. phone records
Activist's daughter OKs autopsy
2 more plead guilty to Colombian drug ring roles
Brooks testifies Atlanta mayor 'always had cash'
Town's police chief, his wife, mayor arrested on same day
Hoosier drivers may sport 'In God We Trust' license plates

Boston Globe: World
As peace comes to Angola, so do the diamond chasers
Authorities begin counting votes in Haitian elections
Koizumi softens vow on female succession
Iraq Coalition Shrinking
Guard Cuts Hit Resistance
U.S. Officials Meet Insurgent Groups
Christian Group Seeks to Help Air Force
Marines Delay Fielding of Scout Vehicles

CENTCOM: News Releases

Department of Defense
Defense Leaders: Army Is Not Broken - Story Photos
Rumsfeld Topic: Budget, QDR Process Photos
Pace Highlights Troops' Needs to Senators Photos
Jones Details NATO Missions at Hearing - Story
Senior Enlisted Visit Focuses on Joint Ops - Story

B-52 Maintenance Team Vital Part of Success - Story
UAV Returned in Iraq; Afghan Suspect Nabbed - Story
Airmen to Supplement MP Unit at Tikrit Base - Story
Iraqi Soldiers Get Renovated Theater, Clinics - Story
Troops Celebrate Super Bowl at FOB Orgun-E - Story

Civil Affairs Keeps Water Flowing in Villages
Navy Helo Unit Supports British Troops in Iraq
U.S. Troops Find Block of Gold Worth $110K
U.S. Soldiers Train Iraqi Medics in Combat Lifesaving
Iraqis Bring Combat Experience to Training

U.S. Army Doctors Aid Badly Burned Infant
20 Troops in Afghanistan Now U.S. Citizens

Marine Receives Kudos for Work - Story

Former NFL Players Visit Troops

Casey: Violence Not Normal
Ops Net Suspects, Weapons Caches
IED Attacks Kill 4 U.S. Marines
Water Treatment Plant Opens
U.S. Army Aids Iraqi Businesswomen
Troops Graduate Leadership Course
Fact Sheet: Progress and Work Ahead
Report: Strategy for Victory in Iraq
Iraq Daily Update
This Week in Iraq (pdf)
Multinational Force Iraq
Eye on Iraq Update (pdf)
State Dept. Weekly Iraq Report (pdf)
'Boots on the Ground' Audio Archive
Iraq Reconstruction

Afghan Workers Improve School
Taliban Detained; Cadets Train
Coalition Achieving Goals
Karzai: Attacks Show Desperation
Afghanistan Update

NATO Focus: Transformation, Ops
Rumsfeld: Must Cooperate to Win
Interpol Issues Alert for Terrorists
Surveillance Goal: Prevent Attacks
Fact Sheet: War on Terror
Fact Sheet: Terror Plots Disrupted
Waging and Winning the War on Terror
Terrorism Timeline
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Officials Propose Tricare Hikes
Programs Enhance Prosthetics
Army Top Sergeant Visits Wounded
Spouses of Wounded Offer Support
Army Reserve to Streamline Force
Bush Sends Budget Request to Hill
National Guard, Reserve Update

Officials Identify Army Casualties - Story

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


Today in History
- Synod of Breslau orders Jews of Silesia to wear special caps
1499 - France & Venice sign treaty against Milan
1554 - Battle at London Sir Thomas Wyatt defeated
1574 - Louis of Nassau ends siege of Maastricht
1621 - Alexander Ludovisi is elected Pope Gregory XV
1667 - Treaty of Andrussovo Russia/Poland signs peace treaty
1674 - English re-conquer New York from Netherlands
1742 - British ex-premier Walpole becomes earl of Orford
1744 - Battle at Toulon (French/Spanish vs English fleet of Admiral Matthews)
1775 - English Parliament declares Massachusetts colony is in rebellion
1788 - Austria declares war on Russia
1799 - USS Constellation captures French frigate Insurgente off Nevis, West Indies
1801 - France & Austrian sign Peace of Lunéville
1807 - French Sanhedrin convened by Napoleon
1822 - American Indian Society organizes
1825 - House of Representatives elects John Quincy Adams 6th US President
1849 - Roman Republic declared
1861 - Jefferson Davis & Alexander Stephens elected president & Vice President of CSA; Tennessee votes against secession; Confederate Provisional Congress declares all laws under the US Constitution were consistent with constitution of Confederate states
1863 - Fire extinguisher patented by Alanson Crane
1867 - Nebraska becomes 37th US state
1870 - Grant signs the bill establishing Federal Meteorological Service
1871 - Federal fish protection office authorized by Congress
1885 - 1st Japanese arrive in Hawaii
1886 - President Cleveland declares a state of emergency in Seattle because of anti-Chinese violence
1891 - 1st shipment of asparagus arrives in San Francisco from Sacramento
1893 - Canal builder De Lesseps & others sentenced to prison for fraud
1895 - Volleyball invented by W G Morgan in Massachusetts
1904 - Japan declares war on Russia
1906 - Natal proclaims state of siege in Zulu uprising
1913 - 10 Day Tragedy of Mexico-City; 3,000 die
1916 - Britain's military service act enforced (conscription)
1920 - International treaty recognizes Norwegian sovereignty over Svalbard
1922 - Snow on Mauna Loa, Hawaii; Italian government of Bonomi falls
1923 - Soviet Aeroflot airlines established
1924 - Nakhichevan ASSR constituted within Azerbaijan SSR
1925 - German Minister Stresemann proposes security treaty with France
1926 - Teaching theory of evolution forbidden in Atlanta, GA schools
1929 - USSR, Estonia, Latvia, Poland & Romania sign Litvinov Pact
1932 - America enter Olympics 2-man bobsled competition for 1st time; US airship Columbia crashes during storm (Flushing NY)
1934 - Balkan Entente alliance forms (Yugoslavia, Greece, Turkey & Romania)
1939 - Belgian Spaak government falls
1941 - British troops conquer El Agheila; Nazi collaborators destroy pro-Jewish café Alcazar Amsterdam (Alcazar refused to hang "No Entry for Jews" signs in front of cafe)
1942 - Daylight Savings War Time goes into effect in US; Japanese troops land near Makassar, South Celebes
1943 - Japanese evacuate Guadalcanal, epic battle ends; FDR orders minimal 48 hour work week in war industry; German riots at "plutocratenzoontjes", 1,200 in Vught Camp; Nazis arrest Dutch sons of rich parents
1944 - U-734/U-238 sunk off Ireland
1945 - Germany destroys Ruhrdammen; WAAF-corporal flies along the tail of a Spitfire
1946 - Dutch Labor Party (Dutch Social Democratic Party) forms
1950 - Senator Joseph McCarthy charges State Dept infested with 205 communists
1953 - General Walter Bedell Smith ends term as 4th director of CIA; Allen W. Dulles, becomes acting director of CIA
1954 - Mario Scelba forms new government in Italy
1955 - US federations of trade unions merge into AFL/CIO
1961 - Joseph Ileo appointed premier of Congo
1962 - Jamaica signs agreement to become independent
1963 - 1st flight of Boeing 727 jet
1964 - GI Joe character created
1969 - Boeing 747, makes 1st commercial flight
1971 - Apollo 14 returns to Earth; Satchel Paige becomes 1st negro-league player elected to baseball HOF
1972 - British government declares state of emergency after month-long miners' strike
1975 - Soyuz 17 returns to Earth
1979 - Nigeria amends constitution
1983 - Belgium buys 44 F-16s
1986 - Haydar Bakr al-Attas appointed President of South Yemen
1987 - Former national security adviser Robert McFarlane attempts suicide
1990 - Galileo flies by Venus; Namibia's constitution ratified
1991 - US Supreme Court agrees to hear Joseph Doherty case; Voters in Lithuania vote for independence
1994 - Israeli minister Shimon Perez signs accord with PLO's Arafat
1997 - Fox cartoon series "Simpsons" airs 167th episode, making it the longest-running animated series in cartoon history
1998 - Failed assassination attempt on Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze
2002 - XIX Winter Olympics opens in Salt Lake City UT/Québec City

1404 - Constantine XI Dragases, last Byzantine Emperor
1826 - John Alexander Logan, Union Major General
1830 - Abdül Aziz Istanbul Ottoman, 32nd sultan of Turkey (1861-76)
1854 - Edward Carson, 1st Baron Carson, lawyer/leader (Irish Unionist Party)
1857 - Johannes T. de Visser, theologist/Dutch 1st minister of Education
1884 - Frederik Gerretson [Geerten Gossaert], Dutch poet/politician)
1891 - Pietro Nenni, socialist/minister of foreign affairs (1946-47)
1909 - Dean Rusk, US Secretary of State (1961-69)
1912 - Hubert William Dean, air armaments specialist
1914 - Max Manus, resistance fighter
1921 - B.M. Ducat-Amos, Air Commandant/director (RAF Nursing Service)
1926 - Garret FitzGerald, Prime Minister of Ireland
1928 - Roger Mudd, news anchor (CBS Weekend News, NBC Evening News)
1929 - Bill Barrett (Representative-NE)
1941 - Sheila James Kuehl politician/actress (Zelda-Dobie Gillis)
1951 - Jay Inslee (Representative-WA)
1953 - Gary Franks (Representative-CT)
1954 - Ulrich Walter, German cosmonaut
1960 - Peggy A. Whitson, Ph.D./astronaut

1555 - John Hooper, deprived Bishop of Gloucester, burnt for heresy
1567 - Henry Stuart, earl of Darnley/Consort of Mary Queen of Scots, murdered
1588 - Marquis of Santa Cruz, Spanish Admiral
1617 - Hans Christoph Haiden, composer, dies at 44
1640 - Murad IV, sultan of Turkey (1623-40), dies in Baghdad at 27
1670 - Frederik III, King of Denmark/Norway (1648-70), dies at 60
1751 - Henri F D'Aguesseau, Chancellor of France (1717-50), dies at 82
1811 - Nevill Maskelyne, 5th Astronomer Royal of England (1765-1811), dies
1860 - Edmond Willem van Dam van Isselt, Dutch military/liberal politician, dies at 63
1932 - Junnosuke Inouye, Japanese minister of Finance, murdered
1943 - ... Reydons, wife of General Reydons, shot to death by resistance
1945 - George J.L. Maduro, resistance fighter (Madurodam), dies in Dachau; Jan Bakker, resistance fighter, executed at 26
1957 - Miklós Horthy von Nagybanya Hung, Admiral/regent (1920-44), dies at 88
1977 - Sergei Ilyushin, Russian airplane builder (Ilyushin), dies at 82
1984 - Yuri Andropov, General Secretary of Soviet Communist Party (1982-84), dies at 69
1995 - J. William Fulbright (Senator-AR)/anti-Vietnam War, dies at 89
1996 - Adolf Galland, General (Luftwaffe), dies at 83
2002 - Princess Margaret, sister of Queen Elizabeth II of England, dies from a stroke at 71
Reported Missing in Action
McLean, James H., US Army (CA); capture confirmed

Meyers, Roger A., USN (IL); A4E crashed into water shortly after takeoff, Killed, body not recovered

Boyles, Howard, Civilian - Air Ameirca; C123 shot down - remains recovered
April, 1973 - ID refuted

Cavil, Jack W, Civilian - Air America; C123 shot down - remains recovered April, 1973