GI SPECIAL 4H11: 11/8/06
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Just Got A Call From My Son
From: Marine Mom
Just as I was going to have lunch he called.
Well, I asked him what he “needed” and he said “to get the hell out of there and come home”.
He’s tired of patrolling 12 to 14 hours, having the Iraqi’s tell them to leave “town”, not knowing who the enemy is, and he is with the Iraqi soldiers, who he said he cannot trust.
The Iraqi soldiers go out on their own and “summarily execute with a bullet to the head” anyone they want to.
He doesn’t understand it, nor does he want to.
He said “if he didn’t know any better, he thought he died and went to hell.”
He watched from the rooftop of the [X] in [Anbar] as 3 of his buddies were shot, one dead, the kid from Vermont.
They were in a horrendous gun battle, with RPG’s and AK-47's blaring at them.
They were all involved.
He said to me “mom, things are so bad here you couldn’t really understand.” and “I knew it was coming, we all did. After Zarqawai was killed, it got so much worse under the new guy. He has to prove himself now, so we can’t trust anyone.”
“The kids even throw hand-grenades at us.” and then he said, “I go out on long, hot patrols, and now when I get back, I stare at the wall for hours doing nothing but staring. It never used to be like that, I don’t even want to eat.”
So needless to say, I cannot eat anything today.
I am very tired and am intolerant of people who do not give a shit about all of this mess!
Do you have a friend or relative in the service? Forward this E-MAIL along, or send us the address if you wish and we’ll send it regularly. Whether in Iraq or stuck on a base in the USA, this is extra important for your service friend, too often cut off from access to encouraging news of growing resistance to the war, at home and inside the armed services. Send requests to address up top.
IRAQ WAR REPORTS
Bodies Of Two US Pilots Retrieved
Aug 10 (KUNA)
US army said here Thursday two bodies of US pilots who were flying a Black Hawk chopper before it crashed down in Al-Anbar province west Baghdad had been retrieved.
The statement said the Black Hawk chopper crashed near the Euphrates River in Al-Anbar province and it exploded wounding four of its crew. The pilots had gone missing.
Occupation Soldier Wounded;
Aug 10 (KUNA)
The Multi-National Forces (MNF) said one of their soldiers was injured in a bomb attack on their vehicle west of Kirkuk.
REALLY BAD PLACE TO BE:
How Bad Is It?
Top U.S. General In Western Iraq Requests Renewable Energy Systems
8.10.06 Inside The Pentagon
The top U.S. military commander in western Iraq, Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Richard Zilmer, is requesting shipments of renewable energy systems in an attempt to reduce the time fuel convoys spend on roads where they are susceptible to attack from insurgents using makeshift bombs and rocket-propelled grenades.
Commanders in Anbar province are seeking to leverage resources such as sunlight or wind to produce power for their bases and outposts.
AFGHANISTAN WAR REPORTS
British Soldier Killed, Another Seriously Wounded
BBC NEWS 9 August 2006 & August 10. 2006 Associated Press
A British soldier has been killed in a traffic accident in Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence has said.
The soldier was serving with the Royal Logistic Corps in Kabul and is the fifth UK soldier to die this month.
The ministry said the soldier was killed in Camp Souter, and there was “no insurgent involvement”.
Another was seriously wounded in small-arms fire with insurgents in the Musa Qala district of Helmand province, the ministry said in a statement, without offering many details.
Welcome To Jalalabad, General:
August 10, 2006 By RAHIM FAIEZ, Associated Press Writer
A roadside bomb Thursday killed an Afghan civilian in an eastern province, officials said.
The roadside bomb went off in Jalalabad Thursday morning while Lt. Gen. Karl Eikenberry, the top U.S. general in Afghanistan, visited a U.S. base in the city.
Troops In Afghanistan Told To Wait For Armored Vehicles;
8.8.06 Mideast Stars and Stripes [Excerpts]
A top U.S. Central Command adviser promised troops at Bagram Air Base that he would work to put more armored vehicles in Afghanistan, but said that the roadside bomb threat in Iraq still outweighs the needs in the country.
“All of our Humvees are being up-armored now,” he said. “It’s just a matter of prioritization, and obviously Iraq is a pretty critical need.
“It’s based on risk and based on threat,” said Command Chief Master Sgt. Curtis Brownhill, adviser to CENTCOM commander Gen. John Abizaid on sustainment issues.
[What the stupid liar isn’t mentioning is that the ratio of U.S. troops killed in Afghanistan is greater than the ratio of troops killed in Iraq. Let’s make sure Brownhill stays in Afghanistan, and make sure he takes one of those death-traps out on patrol each and every day. Then we’ll learn about his view of where the risks are. But that dream won’t come true. He will soon be safety back at the Pentagon, preparing to spread more bullshit and lies, and encountering the life threatening dangers of the Pentagon dining room.]
Assorted Resistance Action
9 August 2006 AP &August 10, 2006 By RAHIM FAIEZ, Associated Press Writer & AFP
In southeastern Paktika province, a roadside bomb on Wednesday killed two Afghan soldiers and wounded three in Waza Khwa district as they returned after a mission to help police surrounded by insurgents, said Defense Ministry spokesman Gen. Mohammad Zahir Azimi.
Eight policemen and 12 Taliban insurgents died when rebels ambushed a security patrol and a firefight broke out in restive southern Afghanistan, a provincial spokesman said.
The fierce clash in Kandahar province’s volatile Panjwayi district on Wednesday left another seven policemen and nine rebels wounded, spokesman Daud Ahmadi told AFP.
“A police patrolling convoy was attacked by Taliban. Eight policemen and 12 Taliban were killed,” Ahmadi said on Thursday.
The district some 30 kilometers (18 miles) west of Kandahar was the scene of fierce clashes between the coalition and Taliban troops in mid-May. Some 34 civilians also died when US-led warplanes bombed a village in Panjwayi.
Three Afghan army soldiers were wounded Tuesday when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in the Proja Jadeed area of eastern Khost province, the ministry said Wednesday.
IF YOU DON’T LIKE THE RESISTANCE
A Deadly Danger To Every Troop Serving In Or Near Iraq;
August 07, 2006 Paul Egan, The Detroit News [Excerpts]
Nobody can say U.S. Army veteran Arvid Brown’s Gulf War illness is all in his head.
Brown’s late wife, Janyce, caught leishmaniasis — a sometimes deadly parasitic disease borne by sand flies that can attack the body’s cells and internal organs — a malady he brought home from Operation Desert Storm. So did the Swartz Creek couple’s two young children.
Now, the U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled the federal government and the Department of Veterans Affairs can be sued for alleged failure to diagnose Brown’s illness and for any injuries he and his family suffered.
Veterans’ groups are hailing the decision as a victory for families of tens of thousands of veterans of not only the first Gulf War, in which Brown served, but subsequent Mideast conflicts.
“This is a huge case,” said Joyce Riley, spokeswoman for the American Gulf War Veterans Association in Versailles, Mo. “This gives a lot of veterans a lot of hope.”
When Brown, now 48, returned from the Gulf War in 1991, he couldn’t understand why his once-vigorous health was deteriorating. His head, muscles and bones ached, his strength was sapped; he was constantly exhausted but could not sleep.
Doctors with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs could not pinpoint an ailment.
They denied him disability benefits in 1995, and Brown said they prescribed painkillers and mood-altering drugs that made things worse. [This is so typical. The assholes do that for everything: hey, it’s OK, go ahead, be a drug addict. One more expressions of thanks from an ungrateful government.]
It was Brown’s wife, Janyce, who had the research skills and persistence eventually to find a doctor who in 1998 diagnosed Brown with leishmaniasis.
By then, Janyce, too, had contracted the disease and both the couple’s children had been born with it and other ailments, according to medical reports filed in the case from Dr. Gregory Forstall, then-director of infectious diseases at McLaren Regional Medical Center in Flint, now in private practice.
The government has not disputed the medical reports.
Janyce Brown developed a series of ailments and last year died at age 43 of a rare and inoperable form of liver cancer. Though no definite link was established between her leishmaniasis and other diseases, Arvid Brown said his wife was healthy before they met.
Janyce Brown in 2004 brought a $125 million lawsuit against the government, but a federal judge in Detroit ruled the family couldn’t sue for injuries a soldier suffered while on active duty.
Late last month, the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati partially overturned O’Meara’s decision, saying the government is not liable for injuries suffered while Brown was on active duty but it can be sued for what happened once he returned to Michigan. The government may appeal, officials said.
“They should not be allowed to just use us up and throw us away,” said Brown, now alone and raising two disabled children, ages 9 and 10, on his disability income. “Somebody has got to be accountable.”
Mark Zeller, 42, a Gulf War veteran in Dahlonega, Ga., said he is about to bring a lawsuit against the government and believes the decision in Brown’s case will strengthen his legal position.
“I can’t do anything and I have to sleep all the time,” said Zeller, who has been diagnosed by Veterans Affairs doctors with chronic fatigue syndrome but says his wife and five children also constantly suffer from flulike symptoms.
Leishmaniasis is little-known in North America but common in southwest Asia and many other parts of the world. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 12 million people in the tropics and subtropics have the disease. One form produces skin lesions.
The more severe and deadly form, which Brown has, attacks blood cells and the body’s internal organs. Like malaria, it is a chronic disease that can be controlled but not cured.
[And guess what. Lots of troops in Iraq get the skin lesions. And the military doctors give them a little cream to make it go away. And they do NOT tell the troops that the parasite the causes the skin lesions can still be alive and well insider your body, hibernating, and then breaking loose to infect and destroy your internal organs. And kill you. And kill anybody who gets it from you. These rats are the enemy, not the Iraqis.]
Dr. Katherine Murray Leisure is a former Department of Veterans Affairs doctor now in private practice in Lebanon, Pa., specializing in infectious diseases. She said leishmaniasis if often difficult to diagnose and could be an underlying factor in half or more of the thousands of cases of veterans commonly referred to as suffering from “Gulf War syndrome.”
Bedouins and others who live in the desert clothe their entire bodies for good reasons, Murray Leisure said. But, when U.S. forces go to the desert to fight, “we try to pretend we’re at the Jersey shore.”
No reliable numbers are available on how many family members believe they have been infected.
But Riley, a registered nurse and former U.S. Air Force captain, said she believes tens of thousands of veterans’ relatives have suffered.
“I think this is the Titanic,” said Robert P. Walsh, Brown’s Battle Creek attorney. “All these guys saw was the tip of the iceberg.”
Arvid Brown, who grew up in southwest Detroit, spent about six months overseas during Desert Storm, helping to build, maintain and operate a prisoner of war camp near Hafr Al-Batin in northeastern Saudi Arabia, about 25 miles from the Iraqi border.
Brown remembers the sand flies, the camel spiders and the bug repellent. He remembers meeting soldiers in the desert who wore dogs’ flea collars around their necks, wrists and ankles and thinking how unhealthy that seemed.
The muscle aches, bone pains, headaches and rashes began while he was in Saudi Arabia, but “it was easy to attribute it to heat and everything I was doing,” Brown recalled.
Solving the mystery would take seven years as Brown’s condition worsened through periods of disorientation, blackouts, extreme light sensitivity and almost unbearable pain. By 1998, when he was finally diagnosed, Brown had lost his job, been forced to give up driving and said he awoke early most mornings from a fitful sleep, vomiting blood.
Veterans Affairs doctors, who according to court records examined Brown on Sept. 13, 1994, but did not detect the disease, said he was suffering anxiety attacks and prescribed pills, Brown said. The department did not grant him benefits until 1998 and only this year recognized his diagnosis of leishmaniasis.
Brown wed Janyce Surface in September 1994 as his health continued to spiral downward. He lost his job and they struggled to pay bills.
Children arrived: Asa, now 10, in 1995, and his sister, Helen, now 9, in 1997. Both were born with severe handicaps and later tested positive for leishmaniasis. Helen is still unable to speak.
It was Janyce Brown who got her husband an appointment with Forstall, who diagnosed Arvid Brown with leishmaniasis in October 1998. Chemotherapy put the disease into remission, though Brown continues to struggle with his health today.
By 2000, Janyce Brown and both children had also tested positive for leishmaniasis. As Janyce struggled to care for her husband and look after two young children with cerebral palsy, her own health rapidly deteriorated. She died at home of cancer.
“She was an extremely intelligent individual, someone with the will and the nerves of steel and the tenaciousness of the meanest bulldog you had ever come across,” Brown said.
“She was fighting for her husband, the man she loved … and her children … She will always be my biggest hero.”
Guard And Reserve Miss Recruiting Goals
August 10, 2006 By Michelle Tan, Army Times Staff writer
The active Army enjoyed its 14th consecutive successful recruiting month in July, but both the Army National Guard and the Army Reserve fell short, the Defense Department announced today .
The Guard missed its July goal by 25 percent, with only 5,021 recruits instead of the targeted 6,734.
This is the second time the Guard has missed its monthly goals this year, but it remains at 100 percent of its year-to-date goal. The Guard’s goal for fiscal 2006 is 70,000 recruits.
Army Reserve recruiters brought in 3,083 soldiers in July, 90 percent of the goal, according to Army Recruiting Command. This is the fourth time this year the Reserve has missed its monthly goals, but strong numbers during the other months has kept the Reserve at 104 percent of its year-to-date goal. The annual goal is 25,500.
Massachusetts Politicians Fuck Over Iraq Vets;
August 9, 2006 By Dave Wedge and Laura Crimaldi, Exclusive Via MillionVetmarch2006
Lawmakers have slammed the classroom door shut on Massachusetts soldiers home from Iraq and seeking to go to state college, failing to cough up $8 million needed for crucial tuition waivers.
Army and Air National Guard soldiers expecting to be rewarded for their war duty under Gov. Mitt Romney’s “Welcome Home” bill found the welcome mat ripped out last week by the Legislature as it ended its formal session without approving money for the waivers.
“One of the main reasons I joined the Army was to get money to go to college,” said David Cowing, 23, of Rockland, an Iraq war veteran who is taking out at least $3,500 in loans to cover tuition for his first year at UMass-Boston because his benefits won’t kick in in time to pay the first bills.
“I went and fought in Iraq. I shouldn’t have to worry about tuition. I should be able to go wherever I want.”
National Guard officials say the bureaucratic red tape has left some soldiers scrambling to meet tuition costs.
“It appears that some schools are honoring the tuition fee waivers and some are not,” said National Guard spokesman Maj. Winfield Danielson. “We remain hopeful that the Legislature will fund the tuition waiver in an informal session.”
At Framingham State College, where 17 National Guard members enrolled last year, administrators said they plan to honor the fee waiver and petition the Board of Higher Education for reimbursement.
“We’re not going to deny any National Guard member who presents a certificate of eligibility to us,” said Dean of Admissions Philip Dooher. “The money will wind its way back here. We’re not asking them to front it.”
Other state school officials said yesterday they were unsure as to how to proceed.
“We have to comply with what the legislation says and we’re in the process of trying to figure that out,” said Brian Baldwin, a Bridgewater State College spokesman.
A UMass-Boston spokesman said the school will continue to honor the tuition waiver for veterans, and advocate for better benefits for soldiers.
65,000 Gay Personnel Are Now Serving In The Military
8.6.06 Long Island Newsday
The Urban Institute, a nonpartisan social policy and research organization, estimates about 65,000 gay personnel are now serving in the military, and another 1 million gays and lesbians are veterans.
A 2005 study by the Government Accountability Office found that in the first 10 years of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, the military discharged 9,500 service members under DADT, 757 of whom had training in critical jobs and/or foreign languages, such as Arabic.
General Sees V-22 Ospreys In Combat Soon;
8.4.06 Defense Daily
Capping two decades of development, the first V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft are about to deploy to a combat zone: Iraq. The half-helicopter, half-airplane will serve in Iraq starting perhaps in late summer next year, according to Lt. Gen. John Castellaw, deputy Marine Corps deputy commandant for aviation.
While critics have said the Osprey is not as maneuverable as a helicopter in tight combat situations, and thus shouldn’t be used in war areas, Castellaw said, “If I didn’t believe it was combat-ready, I wouldn’t send it” to Iraq. [Any chairborne brasshole can send it. But how about ordering him to fly it personally into some combat? That would be a real test of his opinions, wouldn’t it?]
While Troops Suffer And Die In Iraq,
8.4.06 Washington Post
The Senate approved an amendment sponsored by Sen. Tom Coburn, who scours the federal budget for waste and mismanagement, that would cap spending on conferences by the Defense Department at $70 million in fiscal 2007.
Coburn said the Pentagon sent 36,000 military and civil service employees to 6,600 conferences worldwide last year at an average cost of $2,200 per person.
“Of interest is that of those 6,600 conferences, 663 were held in Florida in the middle of the winter; 224 were held in Las Vegas, and 98 in Hawaii,” he said.
Thieving, Incompetent War Profiteers;
8.3.06 Boston Globe
The top auditor of the U.S. reconstruction effort in Iraq detailed a series of failures, including a $218.5 million emergency radio network that does not work, a hospital that is turning out to be twice as expensive as planned, an oil pipeline that is spewing lakes of crude oil onto the ground and a prison that was meant to hold 4,400 inmates but can house only about 800.
Join Veterans Featured In Sir! No Sir!
From: David Zeiger, Director of Sir! No Sir!
Join Veterans Featured in Sir! No Sir! in a Day of Fasting to Bring the Troops Home—FAST!
Tomorrow Sir! No Sir! opens for a week at the Northwest Film Forum in Seattle, Washington — the 80th city in North America to screen the film so far!
This coincides with the Veterans For Peace Convention, happening in Seattle this weekend.
Today at the Convention, Vietnam War resisters Mike Wong and Randy Rowland, (whose stories are told in the film) joined with Gulf War resister Jeff Paterson and Iraq War conscientious objector Camilo Mejia and stood with Cindy Sheehan as she announced her plans to create a refuge for war resisters and their families at Camp Casey in Crawford, Texas.
War resistance is on the rise and more and more servicemen and women are learning about their rights to be conscientious objectors and the rich history they are becoming a part of.
In honor of war resisters and conscientious objectors, veterans from the Vietnam War and the Iraq War are joining the Troops Home Fast by committing to a national day of fasting to bring the troops home, tomorrow: Friday, August 11.
This day of fasting is being organized by Vietnam veterans Mike Wong, Randy Rowland, Tom Bernard, Oliver Hirsch and Susan Schnall who shared their stories in Sir! No Sir! .
They will be joined by dozens of veterans at the Vets For Peace Convention and some of the crew who worked on the film. I am joining in on the fast as well for the day.
Please consider fasting with us tomorrow or another day soon, and with the money you save on food, buy a copy of Sir! No Sir! today for yourself or a friend!
David Zeiger, Director of Sir! No Sir!
Sir! No Sir!:
The Sir! No Sir! DVD is on sale now, exclusively at www.sirnosir.com.
Also available will be a Soundtrack CD (which includes the entire song from the FTA Show, “Soldier We Love You”), theatrical posters, tee shirts, and the DVD of “A Night of Ferocious Joy,” a film by me about the first hip-hop antiwar concert against the “War on Terror.”
“If The V.A. Has Duty To Assist Well Get Off Your Negative Asses And Assist”
From: jorge r
I’m 55 year old Vietnam veteran.
Ever since I became a veteran I’ve ask my self who does the v.a. work for?
at time it seem to be totally against the very people who gives it work. they hide denied and never coincide with any thing that we veterans present.
Agent orange never happen,
desert sickness never happen,
ptsd just making it up .
File a claim 4yrs -10 yrs to conclude waste of government money time and effort.
One presents documents oh one letter was miss spelled this why your claim has been delayed
any thing to make go on and on and on
If the V.A. has duty to assist well get off your negative asses and assist.
In god we trust who do you trust in.
I don’t mean to be negative but you are one agency that need to revamp.
Handy-Dandy Guide To U.S. Foreign Policy
08/09/06 By Nicholas von Hoffman, New York Observer
Q: What is the difference between a regime and a government?
A: A regime is a government disliked by the United States. A government is a regime that the United States likes.
Q: Are all axes evil?
A: No. An example of an axis of good is the Washington-London axis, which is an axis of very good because it is mostly Anglo-Saxon. The Paris-Berlin axis is good, but not as good as Washington-London.
Q: Recently, reports from Iraq have it that crowds are stoning the police when they arrive after a massacre. What does that mean?
A: In certain Arab-type countries, this is considered a support-the-police gesture, similar to Americans who put support-our-troops decals on their S.U.V.’s.
Q: It seems that the attacks and killings in Iraq are growing. What should a current-events buff make of it?
A: Higher levels of violence indicate that the terrorists are growing weaker and more desperate. We should welcome news of larger slaughters as proof of progress and an indication that our troops will be home sooner.
Q: Sooner than what?
A: Sooner than soon. Just remember the good news is that 3,149 Iraqi civilians were killed in June, up from 2,669 in May. Washington Middle East experts are predicting 6,000 a month in the near future and 15,000 by Election Day.
Q: Is Iraq near civil war?
A: No. A civil war must be declared by both sides, and since Iraq has one government that is too weak to do anything anyway, a civil war is impossible.
Q: Please help us to understand how they can be trying Saddam Hussein for killing 148 people 24 years ago when on some days they are killing twice as many in Iraq now. Does that make sense to you?
A: You have to take the long view. Remember, we are in Iraq to stay the course. By 2030 C.E., which is 24 years from now, anyone killing so much as a goat will be tried and convicted. Do not allow miscellaneous factoids to confuse you. Stay focused and remain good to go where the Commander in Chief points.
Q: What are some of the signs that show we are winning the war in Iraq?
A: When we first liberated Iraq, the locals only tried to kill American military and were often not successful. Over time they have gotten better at that, which is proof of how American foreign aid is working.
But the sign of the biggest improvement is that the Iraqis are now killing each other. In the bad old pre-American days, a few of them under Saddam Hussein’s orders used to kill other Iraqis, but most Iraqis were forbidden to kill each other, but now, under democracy, all can slaughter each other. And next year there will be vastly improved electric service.
Q: What is an asymmetrical war?
A: There are several kinds of asymmetrical wars. One kind is when normal people fight dwarfs and midgets. Another kind is when normal people fight hunchbacks and or persons who have one leg shorter than the other. Another form of asymmetrical war is when Christians and Jews, generally thought of as white men, fight Arabs, generally not thought of as particularly white. Does that answer your question?
Q: What is the Geneva Convention?
A: The so-called Geneva Convention is held annually on a rotating basis by the pharmaceutical industry in Geneva, Ill., Geneva, Ohio, Geneva, N.Y., Lake Geneva, Wis., and Geneva, Switzerland. At these conventions, the delegates discuss questions of biomedical ethics.
Q: What is a Katyusha rocket?
A: It is a World War II rocket invented in 1937 by Georgy E. Langemak, Vladimir Artemiev, Boris Petropavlovaky and Yuryi Pobedonostsev, Russian Communists all.
It is named after a girl called Ekaterina, nicknamed Katyusha. The weapon is notoriously inaccurate unless the person using it chants the names of its inventors five times rapidly. Its accuracy can also be increased by orders of magnitude if, while using the device, you sing the Katyusha song. No Arab has successfully sung the Katyusha song, which explains why Hezbollah’s erratic fire hits civilians.
Nevertheless, equipped with Russian weapons like the Katyusha and Kalashnikov, the Arabs have a huge advantage over the Israelis and the Americans, who are forced to fight with World War III and IV weapons, many of which are so poorly designed that the persons discharging them may be hundreds or even thousands of miles away from the targets. This may explain why there is so much collateral damage to toddlers and nursing mothers.
Q: Who started the new war in Lebanon and why?
A: The terrorists started it out of spite and hatred.
Q: Why are the Arabs always kidnapping Israeli soldiers?
A: They claim they do it because the Israelis have 9,000 of their people in jail and that’s the only way they can get them out. But, of course, the real reason is that they wish to drive Israel into the sea, and their plan is to do so by kidnapping all the Israelis one at a time, putting them on inflatable rafts and pushing them out into the Mediterranean.
Q: What is the Shiite Crescent?
A: It is a conspiracy that starts in Iran, goes through Iraq and ends up in Lebanon.
Q: What is a Shiite?
A: A member of an anti-American/Israeli Islamofascist sect. The Shiites were the ungrateful Iraqis who turned against the Americans after the Americans had liberated them from Saddam Hussein.
Q: So how do we handle that?
A: We sic the Sunnis on them.
Q: Who are the Sunnis?
A: That’s the Osama bin Laden/Saddam Hussein crowd. We get them to attack the Shiites, which they are doing right smartly in Iraq, and that way we keep all the Arabs at each other’s throats.
Q: Wouldn’t that make matters worse?
A: No. It will show a healthy democratic diversity of opinion.
Q: Who should look at fromisraeltolebanon.info, a Web site showing pictures of dead Lebanese babies?
A: Nobody. They put these pictures up on the Internet to grab your attention and make you feel guilty as if you are killing babies. Do not fall victim to their crude propaganda.
Q: Is Israel like Nazi Germany?
Q: How do the two differ?
A: Israel is a deeply religious democracy with its own Bible containing a real-estate deed to the Middle East, while Nazi Germany did not have a Bible and did not put much stock in God since it had Adolf Hitler instead.
Q: But what about the accusations that the Israelis do things in Gaza and Lebanon which remind people of what the Nazis did?
A: Such accusations are only made by Islamists or persons with left-wing attitudes at a loss as to how to cause trouble since the fall of the Soviet Union. Also, French people sometimes say such things.
There are major differences between how Israel acts and what Nazi Germany did.
For instance, when the Nazis decided to blow a community to kingdom come, they did it without any warning. The Israelis always warn first. They drop pamphlets from the sky, telling the residents they have anywhere from 20 minutes to a few hours to run for their lives. That’s time enough to slip on your flip-flops, scoop up the baby and get the hell out of the house before it gets bunker-busted. The Nazis would never give people that kind of humanitarian break.
Q: Is that the only difference?
A: No, not at all.
The Nazis had mass-murder factories where they poison-gassed and killed millions of Jewish and other people.
Israelis do not do anything like that. What they do when they come up against a million or so terroristo/Islamo-fascisto Arabistos is to seal off the buggers from land, sea and air so that nobody can leave and nothing can get in that the Israelis do not want to let in.
If the people want food or medicine, they’ve got to grow it, or else they can pray to Allah if he’s such a big one-and-only G-O-D. Then the Israelis destroy the power plants, the water system, the sewage-treatment plants, the roads and the bridges and let the terroristo/Islamo-fascisto Arabistos stew in their own juices.
Q: Do the good guys ever kidnap anyone?
A: You need to think that question through a little more. Without stereotyping anybody, it’s safe to say that Arabs, who tend toward the sneaky and cowardly, kidnap. Americans and Israelis capture.
Q: What is a ceasefire?
A: It is a word for surrender to people who do not have the stomach to see the war on terror through to the end.
Q: When will the end come?
A: When the Rapture does.
At that time, swords will be beaten into plowshares (except for a few, just in case) and Jews will become Christians (or get their throats slit) and those left standing will join in celebrating the Second Coming with dancing, Pepsi-Cola and feasting on Arab-burgers.
What do you think? Comments from service men and women, and veterans, are especially welcome. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org. Name, I.D., withheld on request. Replies confidential.
THIS IS NOT A PARODY;
Aug 10 By Ross Colvin, (Reuters)
U.S. and Iraqi forces sealed off parts of one of Baghdad’s most dangerous districts on Thursday, searching thousands of homes in an effort to regain control of the capital’s lawless streets.
When U.S. troops break down doors or smash windows to enter homes in search of illegal weapons, explosives and wanted insurgents, they are followed shortly afterwards by local contractors who repair the locks or replace the windows.
U.S. troops have often been accused of alienating Iraqis with heavy-handed tactics, particularly during house searches.
OCCUPATION ISN’T LIBERATION
The Great Iraqi Collaborator Troop Training Fiasco Rolls On
8.10.06 New York Times
Two years after the start of an all-out training effort by the United States and its allies, many of the early troubles with Iraqi forces remain: weak discipline, divided loyalties, failure to complete tasks, the tendency to fire wildly in every direction at the first sign of danger.
THIS IS NOT A PARODY #2;
8.9.06 Washington Post
U.S. military commanders handed over to their Iraqi counterparts primary security responsibility for a swath of northern territory extending from the foothills of Iraq’s eastern mountains all the way west to the Syrian border.
Visiting U.S. and Iraqi officials hailed the transfer, which will have no immediate effect on American troop levels in the area.
Bush Success In Lebanon!
[Thanks to JM, who sent this in.]
August 9, 2006 Clancy Chassay in Beirut, The Guardian [Excerpts]
Estimates of the number of Hizbullah fighters active in the field range from 1,000 to 10,000, with a potential reserve force as high as 200,000. But the daily killing of civilians has created a new militancy among Lebanon’s youth, suggesting that Hizbullah can now mobilise thousands more.
In some cases the radicalisation has crossed religious lines. Daisy is a 34-year-old Christian who works in a bank in upmarket district of Beirut. “I feel a great rage burning inside me,” she says. “We are all the resistance now. They (Hizbullah) are not doing this for Syria, they’re not doing this for Iran, they are doing this for Lebanon.”
According to Mohammed, some of those keen to join the war have made it south and have been allowed to remain in their villages to defend them. “There is Hizbullah in the villages but there are others there as well. You can go back to your village and defend it if you can reach it, but Hizbullah will not allow you to accompany them on their operations.”
A senior Hizbullah member who asked not be named said: “Religiously it is not permitted to waste people’s lives by putting them in danger when they are not adequately trained. There are volunteers who help with supplies and other things.”
Young women are among those eager to volunteer. Sitting with three friends in one of the Zarif school’s empty classrooms recently converted into a women’s prayer room, 21-year-old Sanine says: “As a woman I can help in many non-military ways. I can help the wounded; I can provide food and bring supplies. We all want to help in anyway we can.”
Despite ideological differences, many young leftists are also now backing the fight against Israel. They see Hizbullah as filling the vacuum left by the largely ineffective Lebanese government and respect what they see as the dedication and competence of the fighters.
“When The Fighting Dies Down, Hezbollah Fighters Emerge From The Bunkers And Set Up Ambushes For IDF Soldiers And Armored Vehicles”
[Thanks to D and PB, who sent this in.]
Aug 10 By CHRISTOPHER TORCHIA, Associated Press Writer & By Ze’ev Schiff, Haaretz Correspondent
The large number and the location of the casualties that the Israel Defense Forces sustained Wednesday indicate that the army does not yet control the narrow strip along the border, although this stage of the ground operation was supposed to have been completed already.
An Israeli soldier was killed and two were wounded in fierce battles with Hezbollah guerrillas Thursday, a day after the Israeli military suffered its worst one-day military loss, with 15 soldiers killed.
The two battles also reveal a great deal about Hezbollah’s method of fighting. They took place in two relatively small communities, Ayta al-Shab and Debel, close to the international border, on territory that until May 2000 was in Israel’s Security Zone.
The ground operation, dubbed “Change of Direction 8,” was intended to conquer this border strip. First it was to be a two- to three-kilometer strip. Then it was expanded to five to six kilometers, including numerous Lebanese villages and towns. The mission was to blow up all Hezbollah’s outposts in this strip and drive its forces out.
What happened in Bint Jbail recurred in Ayta al-Shab. Although it seemed that the town had been conquered, it transpired again and again that there were still Hezbollah men in it. Once again, clashes and battles took place, and again, the IDF suffered dead and wounded.
Although the army had conquered the town, Hezbollah men were hiding in underground bunkers well camouflaged from the outside. The bunkers had been stocked with large quantities of food, enough to last for weeks, and ammunition, including antitank missiles and, in several cases, short-range rockets.
The bunkers are connected to electricity and, according to one report, are air conditioned. When the fighting dies down, Hezbollah fighters emerge from the bunkers and set up ambushes for IDF soldiers and armored vehicles.
That is why soldiers are hit repeatedly in the same places.
On several occasions, there have been difficulties evacuating wounded soldiers under fire.
At times, Hezbollah fighters have fired rockets at Israel from areas close to the border that the IDF had supposedly conquered already.
The IDF could forge ahead, as it has done in the last two days in the Marjayoun area. But even after such an incursion, Hezbollah fighters who remain in the bunkers could continue launching rockets. In other words, they could fire toward Israel from behind the lines of IDF forces that have progressed deep into Lebanon.
It is clear that the Hezbollah men who stayed behind are equipped with two-way radios and receive information from scouts hiding near the border. This explains the difficulties in managing the fighting in south Lebanon, which the IDF has not encountered before.
48 % Of US Public Says Israel’s Bombing Campaign Against Lebanon Not Justified
Agence France Presse – 8 August 2006
The traditionally pro-Israel US public is closely divided on the Jewish state’s battle with Lebanon’s Hezbollah militia, a new poll showed.
Forty-six percent of Americans surveyed blame Israel and Hezbollah equally for the conflict, whereas 39 percent blame Hezbollah alone, according to the ABC News/Washington Post poll released late Monday.
The poll found Americans nearly evenly split on whether Israel’s intense bombing of Lebanese targets to eliminate Hezbollah’s ability to launch rocket barrages against Israeli targets was justified.
In the poll, 47 percent said Israel was justified in its bombing campaign, against 48 percent who were opposed.
“Death To America! Death To America!”
August 10, 2006 By Scott Peterson, Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor [Excerpts]
With his arm raised and fist clenched, Sheikh Hussein furiously expressed a sentiment rapidly taking hold here.
“We know who our first enemy is: America,” he shouted before tearful mourners at a funeral Wednesday for 30 civilians killed by an Israeli airstrike on Monday. The white-turbaned sheikh led the crowd in a militant chant: “Death to America! Death to America!”
Moments before the first child was interred by weeping parents Wednesday, Israeli ordnance hit again at a building nearby; more strikes followed during burials.
And in Beirut’s Shiyyah district, where the Israeli strikes Monday night took more than 40 lives – the largest single-event toll of the conflict – it was a day of digging.
Just after first light, Hassan Dirani pulled several stuffed teddy bears and toys from the rubble, shook off the dust, and gently assembled them on a slab of concrete, with a blonde doll on top. They were dolls his own children had given to families displaced by fighting in the south, who had sought refuge in this “safe” Shiite-Christian neighborhood.
For Mr. Dirani, his emotions were first about the children – three of his remained in the rubble. And second, they were about accusing the US of giving Israel a free hand to destroy Lebanon.
“Thank you, George Bush. Thank you for those ‘smart’ bombs,” says Dirani, whose wife and surviving son were injured in the attack. “I want to ask George Bush: ‘What did our children do to him?’ “
“I beg Americans not to vote for another butcher and criminal like George Bush,” says Dirani, who works at the environment ministry.
Tearfully, he says his small daughter, now entombed, had been sharing her excitement about her upcoming sixth birthday party next week; she wrote out an invitation list of 20 school friends.
“Why does your system and White House do this to us … give smart bombs to throw on our people?” asks Dirani. “What are you going to tell your kids?”
“That’s how they create terrorists,” says Mohammed, a Lebanese restaurant owner, while watching the digging effort in Shiyyah. “And they ask: ‘Why do they hate us?’ “
As the bulldozers and backhoes moved slabs of smashed concrete, the tines of their buckets biting with determination into the smoking rubble, emergency workers with picks and shovels – and stretchers at the ready – kept a sharp eye for victims.
First one man was found, then a woman.
Then a backhoe driver called out through the dust: “Here’s another one!”
It was 4-year-old Riham Ramaiti, granddaughter of Said Yatim, who broke down, shaking, at the sight of her.
“No! No!” he cried, shouting prayers as she was bundled up and taken away for washing, and then the afternoon funeral. Riham had been visiting relatives with her father, Ali, an electrician, and mother, Maya, when the building collapsed.
“I don’t understand anything! I don’t know, I just don’t know,” wailed Mr. Yatim, his body shaking. “Criminal people and a criminal government does this to us. The kids have nothing to do with missiles and bombs, but they are burning everything. No one in the world deserves such a massacre.”
Other anxious relatives clamored nearby, waiting for news; one official in a bright green emergency vest carried a list of names, crossing out one after another throughout the grim task.
“Americans, Europeans, and the Western people are great people … they love freedom,” says Yatim, as workers sought to find his daughter. “But the governments of Bush and Blair are criminal.”
Yatim’s wife Alia arrived, wearing a black head scarf, her face twisted with emotion.
“I saw Riham,” Yatim reported to her. “She looked the same, nothing changed. She’s an angel.”
The search continued. More were found. An emergency worker discovered a large chunk of shrapnel, a foot long and very heavy, with sharp serrated edges designed to destroy buildings.
“We never thought we would see this in Lebanon again,” says Alia, who survived the 1975-90 civil war.
“Imagine if Americans were receiving this, and not Lebanese,” says Yatim. “If these were Americans dying in this massacre, what would they think?
Then he broke away, as a bucket of rubble was emptied on a collapsed roof. “There is Riham’s toy!” Yatim tells his wife. A moment later, it was covered by another bucketful.
“Will your words and photographs go out? They won’t stop you?” Yatim asks a visiting reporter, his voice at once broken, and tinged with challenge. “We don’t trust the world anymore.”
[To check out what life is like under a murderous military occupation by foreign terrorists, go to: www.rafahtoday.org The occupied nation is Palestine. The foreign terrorists call themselves “Israeli.”]
DANGER: POLITICIANS AT WORK
The Traitor Bush Wants Congress To Pass A Law Protecting “Political Appointees” From War Crimes Charges;
8.9.06 Washington Post
The Bush administration has drafted amendments to a war crimes law that would eliminate the risk of prosecution for political appointees, CIA officers and former military personnel for humiliating or degrading war prisoners, according to U.S. officials and a copy of the amendments.
They would alter a U.S. law passed in the mid-1990s that criminalized violations of the Geneva Conventions, a set of international treaties governing military conduct in wartime. The conventions generally bar the cruel, humiliating and degrading treatment of wartime prisoners, without spelling out what those terms mean.
British Diplomat Denounces Middle East Policy:
[Thanks to Clancy Sigal and JM, who sent this in.]
08/04/2006 By Anton La Guardia, Telegraph Group Limited & August 3, 2006, Oliver King, Guardian Unlimited [Excerpts]
Britain’s diplomats, trained for years in the virtues of discretion and obedient service, are in an unprecedented state of rebellion over Tony Blair’s policies in the Middle East.
Sir Rodric Braithwaite, formerly British ambassador to Moscow and the chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee, issued a more withering personal criticism of Mr Blair and his foreign policy than the divided Tory opposition could ever muster.
Writing in the Financial Times, Sir Rodric compared the Prime Minister to “a frayed and waxy zombie straight from Madame Tussauds… programmed to spout the language of the White House in an artificial English accent”.
He continued: “Stiff in opinions, but often in the wrong, he has manipulated public opinion, sent our soldiers into distant lands for ill-conceived purposes, misused the intelligence agencies to serve his ends and reduced the Foreign Office to a demoralised cipher because it keeps reminding him of inconvenient facts.
“He keeps the dog, but he barely notices if it barks or not.
“He prefers to construct his “foreign policy” out of self-righteous soundbites and expensive foreign travel.”
“Mr Blair has done more damage to British interests in the Middle East than Anthony Eden, who led the UK to disaster in Suez 50 years ago…
“Mr Blair’s total identification with the White House has destroyed his influence in Washington, Europe and the Middle East itself; who bothers with the monkey if he can go straight to the organ grinder?”
Sir Rodric concludes that Tony Blair’s foreign policy leaves Britain vulnerable to al-Qaida attacks: “And though he chooses not to admit it, he has made us more vulnerable to terrorist attacks.” Whitehall officials told the Guardian’s diplomatic editor, Ewen MacAskill, today that the government’s policy of resisting calls for an immediate ceasefire had been “driven by the prime minister alone”.
Sir Rodric says that Tony Blair’s premiership has descended into “scandal and incoherence” and that he should resign immediately.
CLASS WAR REPORTS
GET THE MESSAGE?
OCCUPATION ISN’T LIBERATION
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