Frank A. sends this article about the Kerry-Edwards Campaign swinging into high gear:
Newly crowned Kerry storms back on the campaign trail
SCRANTON, United States (AFP) - Riding the wave of his four-day presidential nomination gala, John Kerry hit the campaign trail again, challenging Republicans on their home turf issues of values and national security.
Kerry and his vice presidential running mate, John Edwards, were accompanied by both their families, as well as Hollywood heart throb Ben Affleck -- doing a bit of goodwill stumping.
Earlier, their bus convoy pulled over at a Wendy's fast food restaurant for a photo opportunity lunch that provided an awkward moment.
Spotting a group of US Marines, Kerry, who has made his Vietnam War service a cornerstone of his campaign, went over to chat. The Marines, who all turned out to be staunch Bush reporters, were not impressed.
"He imposed on us and I disagree with him coming over here shaking our hands," one of them told reporters afterwards. "I'm 100 percent against" Kerry, he said. "We support our commander-in-chief 100 percent."...
Of course, they weren't impressed.
Update:Greyhawk has the photo of the meeting and is having a caption contest. I can't believe that Kerry thinks that his posture and attitude will ever lead to a good photo-op...especially, when standing with Marines.
Commenter David has the best line so far "Say, you didn't pick those ribbons up off the White House lawn."
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - Filmmaker Michael Moore's Bush-basing documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11" apparently has upset more than Republicans.
The (Bloomington) Pantagraph newspaper in central Illinois has sent a letter to Moore and his production company, Lions Gate Entertainment Corp., asking Moore to apologize for using what the newspaper says was a doctored front page in the film, the paper reported Friday. It also is seeking compensatory damages of $1.
A scene early in the movie that shows newspaper headlines related to the legally contested presidential election of 2000 included a shot of The Pantagraph's Dec. 19, 2001, front page, with the prominent headline: "Latest Florida recount shows Gore won election."
The paper says that headline never appeared on that day. It appeared in a Dec. 5, 2001, edition, but the headline was not used on the front page. Instead, it was found in much smaller type above a letter to the editor, which the paper says reflects "only the opinions of the letter writer."
"If (Moore) wants to 'edit' The Pantagraph, he should apply for a copy-editing job," the paper said.
Lions Gate Entertainment did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment Friday.
I wonder if the "$1" suit is a typo or just a way of getting Moore to agree to tell the truth without fighting for months over money.
Tanker Schreiber sends this new initiative to support the troops:
OGDEN, N.Y. (AP) A Rochester-area couple is giving troops in Iraq a touch of home they can wear on their heads.
Richard Kingdon of Ogden is collecting baseball-style caps for U.S. military personnel serving in Iraq. Last spring, the retired high school teacher sent some of the dozens of hats he collected as a college football referee to his son's Marine unit in Iraq.
They were a hit with his son's fellow Marines, who wore them while off-duty. Now Kingdon and his wife, Alice, have collected more than 500 donated caps to send to troops in Iraq in a program they've dubbed 'Hats From Home.'
Richard Kingdon says the program is a way for people to show their support for the troops.
He says people can donate hats from anywhere -- the corner bar, companies, schools or professional sports teams. All they ask is that donated baseball-style hats have logos on them, and are clean, new or unworn.
Donated hats can be mailed to:
Hats From Home
P.O. Box 223
Churchville, N.Y., 14428
...In the next room a Marine fired his machine gun from the second story window. I was watching the seriousness on his face as he fought the onslaught. At that moment a flash of fiery orange enveloped the room. An RPG had scored a direct hit at head level of the Marine I was photographing. So sudden and violent it was, I only have a blurry frame to serve as a reminder. Only the wall of the home saved him from certain death. He was shocked however, screaming as he was knocked to the ground, stunned from the concussion and deafening roar of the grenade.
He took only a moment to regain composure and assess his emotions. He was clearly pissed. He stood back in the window and began firing with more determination than before. It wasn't long until another RPG crashed into the same position. Insurgent forces were well aware of the Marine's position and were determined to score a kill. The barrels of two M-240 machine guns became so hot from the rapid succession of fire that they melted and seized.
On the roof, another battle was raging. Marines on the roof were in such close contact with the insurgents that the two were lobbing hand grenades back and forth. Shrapnel was shooting all over the roof tearing into Marines fighting there. At least one pickup truck full of 15 to 20 fighters was seen heading into the fight...
No, I didn't think of it. I SHOULD have, though...
Anyway, I was just wondering if I should watch Kerry's acceptance speech or play XBox. My wife suggested that I drink some of my scotch collection to reduce the amount of packing we'll have to do in the next few weeks.
Ain't my wife brilliant?
Speaking of brilliant, Mamamontezz has the John Kerry Drinking Game. I'm going to play and I might even blog while doing the shots of Laphroaig and Macallan...hhhmm, if it's more than ten or fifteen, I might have to move to something weaker. Mamamontezz suggests beer shots. I'll put the rules in the Extended Section with a tally on the left of each rule.
Today, four United States of America Regional Embassies opened in Iraq. Below are pictures from today's ceremony in Mosul, Iraq.
Ambassador John Negroponte (center) meets with (from left to right) John Listner, Mark Kennon, Regional Coordinator of Ninevah Province and Anne Derse to discuss the opening of the new Regional Embassy Office in Mosul, Iraq. The embassy officially opened on July 28. It is one of four U.S. embassies throughout Iraq where advisers will assist local government leaders. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Jessika Ross)
Soldiers of Task Force Olympia prepare an American flag to be raised to open the Regional Embassy Office on Camp Freedom in Mosul, Iraq, on July 28. Attending the opening were several leaders of northern Iraq and guest speaker, U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, John Negroponte. The Mosul Embassy Office is one of four throughout Iraq where U.S. advisers will assist local government leaders. (U.S. Army photo by Spc. Jessika Ross)
After all you've been through in the past year, losing in the primaries and being unable to win reelection to your own Senate seat, I do hate to bring more uncertainty into your life; but I've noticed that since being named John Kerry's new best buddy, your Two Americas stump speech and your new commercial now include a challenge to voters that goes something like this: "If you don't think John Kerry is a leader, just ask the men who served with him in Vietnam. They'll tell you he's a leader," or words to that effect.
Well, OK, John, why don't we do just that? Let's ask them.
At a press conference in Washington this past May, an organization called Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, a group of former sailors who served in Kerry's unit in Vietnam, presented a letter to Kerry signed by more than 200 of his former shipmates calling on him to release his military records so that the truth about his abbreviated tour of duty, his spurious wounds and his undeserved medals could be revealed to the American public. Not surprisingly, this event and this organization were totally ignored by the major media, as they continue to be to this day.
Did you catch that press conference? No? Never heard anything about these ol' boys at all huh, John? Well, listen up, Senator.
If you visit their website, Swiftvets.com or a sister site, Wintersoldier.com, you'll see some choice quotes from those fellows who served with your new best buddy. From Admiral Roy Hoffmann, his former commanding officer, come such phrases and characterizations as:
"Contempt for the military and authority."
"Arrived in country with a strong anti Vietnam War bias and a self serving determination to build a foundation for his political future."
"Aggressive, but vain and prone to impulsive judgment, often with disregard for specific tactical assignments."
"A loose cannon."
"Bugged out of Vietnam."
and finally, "Not fit to command."
I'll bet you a Florida precinct that any good trial lawyer would consider someone of Admiral Hoffman's stature an unimpeachable witness, wouldn't you? Loose cannon? Bugged out? Not fit to command? I'm not causing you to have any second thoughts here, am I, John? Hmmm?
Now take a listen to retired Navy Captain, Charlie Plumly, who had Kerry,
"under my command for two or three specific operations before his rapid exit."
Plumly is even less charitable to your new bud than the admiral. His quotes on Kerry's service include these colorful expressions,
"Devious, self-absorbing, manipulative, disdain for authority, disruptive."
And then he gives us this little jewel,
"But the most common phrase would have been requires constant supervision."
Boy that's a comforting thing to read on the resume of the guy who wants to control the world's greatest nuclear arsenal, isn't it? Makes it a little more understandable why your buddy was willing to swallow a Republican as his number two in command, doesn't it, John? You do have to give him credit for knowing he needed a more experienced hand like McCain watching out for him. Sounds to me like what he really needs is Dick Cheney, hear me, John?
Then there's Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, now deceased, Chief of Naval Operations at the time of Kerry's service, who said,
"With Kerry's large ambitions, his career in Vietnam will haunt him if he were ever on the national stage."
Oh my, and just look at who's up there on that stage with him, bringing up that career at every opportunity. Hey, John, as a trial lawyer you've got to know some good investigators. Why don't you part with a few thou and check some of this out? I mean this could take the expression, "egg on your face" to a whole new dimension, know what I mean?
The Swiftvets website has several testimonials from others who served with your buddy and none are laudatory. On the contrary, they are replete with refutations of John Boy's claims in his book, Tour of Duty, ranging from emotional denials of the war crimes Kerry depicts there to ridicule of his wearing that leather flight jacket on the campaign trail and claiming it brought him luck in Vietnam,
"No one wore such a jacket in 90+ heat."
You sure you want to keep bringing this guy's service record up in every speech, John? I know it's easy for someone who never served to be a little overawed, but good grief, even a weenie liberal lawyer ought to be able to figure out you don't wear leather jackets on jungle patrols, you know? And what's with this flight jacket business anyway? What was John Boy flying over there? Sure as hell wasn't a supersonic F-102 interceptor like George Bush, now was it?
But of course! Why didn't I think of it? That jacket could explain the minor nature of his award-winning wounds; kept all that nasty flak and flying lead from really hurting him instead of just breaking the skin, you know? Guess that's why he calls it his lucky jacket. But I got tell you, Man, speaking of breaking, I'm sitting here breaking out in a sweat just thinking about it. I mean, jungle fatigues were hot enough; but leather? With fleece lining? Whew, man, that's hardcore!
Well, I guess I am going have to admit this, John. In this regard, you're right; there are Two Americas: there's the America that believes your buddy wore a fleece lined, leather aviators jacket in the jungle; the America that will mindlessly heed your impassioned challenge to listen to the bought and paid for endorsement of the half dozen or so enlisted crewmen your buddy has shanghaied into his campaign. Then there's that other America, the one out there waiting for the media to let us hear the more than 200 voices of those who served well and honorably, both officers and enlisted, who are telling the truth about your good ol' buddy. Somehow, some way, I believe, I pray, that will happen.
And even if it doesn't, what those truth tellers are saying has relevance for you, John. Think about it; your oh-so-affectionate, backslapping partner bugged out on them and then libeled and slandered them viciously to serve his own political goals. So you might just want to consider this, Senator: if you guys lose in November there will be Two Americas all right. And you can bet your biggest contingency fee anyone Kerry can blame for costing him the goal of his life sure won't be part of his America anymore. Talk about getting a "Dear John" letter.
Think, Johnnie Boy, think. Didn't your ol' Daddy ever teach you nuthin' bout leopards and spots?
Former Paratrooper and Army Officer, "Blackfive" started this blog upon learning of the valorous sacrifice of a friend that was not reported by the journalist whose life he saved. Email: blackfive AT gmail DOT com
Retired Special Operations Master Sergeant, Jim Hanson ("Uncle Jimbo") is now focused on writing about the military, politics, intelligence operations and foreign policy. Email: jimbo AT unclejimbo DOT com
Writer, photographer, and raconteur C. Blake Powers is the Laughing Wolf. He is independent in politics and covers topics including journalism, military, weapons, preparedness, space, science, cooking, food and wine, product and book reviews, and even spirituality. Email: wolf1 AT laughingwolf DOT net Laughing Wolf's Amazon Wish List
Bill Paisley, otherwise known as Pinch, is a 22 year (ongoing) active and
reserve naval aviator. He blogs over at www.instapinch.com on a veritable
cornucopia of various and sundry items and will bring a tactical naval
aviator's perspective to Blackfive. Readers be warned: any comments of or
about the F-14 Tomcat will be reverential and spoken in low, hushed tones.
Email: wpaisley AT comcast DOT net
Mr. Wolf has over 26 years in the Army, Army NG, and USAR. He’s Airborne with 5 years as an NCO, before becoming an officer. Mr. Wolf has had 4 company commands. Signal Corp is his basic branch, and Public Affairs is his functional area. He recently served 22 straight months in Kuwait and Iraq, in Intel, PA, and senior staff of MNF-I. Mr. Wolf is now an IT executive. He is currently working on a book on media and the Iraq war. Functional gearhead.
In Iraq, he received the moniker of Mr. Wolf after the Harvey Kietel character in Pulp Fiction, when "challenges" arose, they called on Mr. Wolf...
Email: TheDOTMrDOTWolfAT gmail DOT com
Deebow is a Staff Sergeant and a Military Police Squad Leader in the Army National Guard. In a previous life, he served in the US Navy. He has over 19 years of experience in both the Maritime and Land Warfare; including deployments to Southwest Asia, Thailand, the South Pacific, South America and Egypt. He has served as a Military Police Team Leader and Protective Services Team Leader and he has served on assignments with the US State Department, US Air Force Security Police, US Army Criminal Investigation Division, and the US Drug Enforcement Administration. He recently spent time in Afghanistan working with, training and fighting alongside Afghan Soldiers and is now focused on putting his 4 year Political Science degree to work by writing about foreign policy, military security policy and politics.
McQ has 28 years active and reserve service. Retired. Infantry officer. Airborne and Ranger. Consider my 3 years with the 82nd as the most fun I ever had with my clothes on. Interests include military issues and policy and veteran's affairs.
Email: mcq51 -at - bellsouth -dot- net
Tantor is a former USAF navigator/weapon system officer (WSO) in F-4E Phantoms who served in the US, Asia, and Europe. He is now a curmudgeonly computer geek in Washington, DC, picking the taxpayers pocket. His avocations are current events, aviation, history, and conservative politics.
Twenty-three years of Active and Reserve service in the US Army in SF (18B), Infantry and SOF Signal jobs with operational deployments to Bosnia and Africa. Since retiring he's worked as Senior Defense Analyst on SOF and Irregular Warfare projects and currently ensconced in the emerging world of Cyberspace.
Major Pain --
A Marine who began his blog in Iraq and reflects back on what he learned there and in Afghanistan. To the point opinions, ideas and thoughts on military, political and the media from One Marine’s View. Email: onemarinesview AT yahoo DOT com
Uber Pig was an Infantryman from late 1991 until early 1996, serving with Second Ranger Battalion, I Corps, and then 25th Infantry Division. At the time, the Army discriminated against enlisted soldiers who wanted use the "Green to Gold" program to become officers, so he left to attend Stanford University. There, he became expert in detecting, avoiding, and surviving L-shaped ambushes, before dropping out to be as entrepreneurial as he could be. He is now the founder of a software startup serving the insurance and construction industries, and splits time between Lake Tahoe, Boonville, and San Francisco, CA.
Uber Pig writes for Blackfive a) because he's the proud brother of an enlisted Civil Affairs Reservist who currently serves in Iraq, b) because he looks unkindly on people who make it harder for the military in general, and for his brother in particular, to succeed at their missions and come home in victory, and c) because the Blackfive readers and commenters help keep him sane.
COB6 spent 24 years in the active duty Army that included 5 combat tours with service in the 1st Ranger Battalion and 1st Special Forces Group . COB6 was enlisted (E-7) and took the OCS route to a commission. COB6 retired a few years back as a field grade Infantry officer.
Currently COB6 has a son in the 82nd Airborne that just returned from his third tour and has a newly commissioned daughter in the 4th Infantry Division.